Resource Review | Growing With

Jen Willard
July 19th, 2019

Kara Powell and Steven Argue are the writers of the recent book titled, Growing With: Every Parent’s Guide to Helping Teenagers and Young Adults Thrive in Their Faith, Family, and Future. Both Kara and Steven have their own approach to parenting as they each parent several children in their own families. Both of the writers share personal testimonies about their own families and experiences with the young people they work with in their own lives. 

Steven and Kara are also seasoned professionals when studying the life and faith of young adults. Their research with the Fuller Youth Institute has given them cutting edge insight on young adults. Compounding on the data presented in the book Growing Young, the most recent installment comes as an encouragement to families who are trying to best walk with their children through new seasons of life. The book is a breath of fresh air for readers who are interested in engaging with young people in relationally based ministry.

This book brings insight into the world of young adults and offers a compassionate and encouraging space for parents and all those who care for young adults. It also provides to new ways to connect with students of all age groups. Kara and Steven point out that young adult’s lives are not linear and parenting today’s young people will look different throughout our children’s different stages of life. Parents remain encouraged by the insight provided and receive new, practical tips on engaging with their students. 

Growing With is a must read for every pastor, parent, or caretaker of teenagers. The writers touch on relevant topics that will be central to the overall development of today’s young people. Their research pinpoints three different stages that each young person will encounter and the ways that parents and other influential adults can influence young adults in positive ways. The stages are learner, explorer, and focuser. Growing With provides parental responses for each of these three stages as well as engaging commentary on the lives and needs of young adults today.

One of my personal favorites from reading this book is the grace filled attitude of the writers. Kara and Steven both write with grace and understanding. They write in a way that is not condemning toward parents or other caregivers. The book seeks to understand the parenting journey and the struggles that our young people currently face and equip parents to rise up in response to the changes and challenges their young adults will face in today’s world while encouraging their child along in the faith. This book will champion and encourage the parents in your ministry.

The research and practical commentary that you find in Growing With is a needed resource for every pastor and parent in your ministry. It is apparent that this book is built to be a starting point for parents wishing to develop new passions and goals toward growing with their students through the different seasons of life. If you can, buy this one for your shelf and place one on your church’s library shelf as well. This book will change the lives of your students and your families for the better.

For more information regarding Growing With, including purchase your copy and subscribing to Fuller Youth Institute’s Growing With podcast, check out our partners at the Fuller Youth Institute.

Jen Willard

Jen Willard has been in full time youth ministry for 5 years and is currently the Youth Pastor at church in Little Rock, AR. She loves continually learning about ministry and is a graduate of Nazarene Theological Seminary’s MDiv program. Jen loves drinking coffee and traveling to new places with her husband Bryan. Follow her on Instagram at @duckjd.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in the YS Blog are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of YS.