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Is That Poop on My Arm? Parenting While Christian

Author: 
Justin Lind-Ayres (Author)
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Description

God meets us, and our kids, in the mess
Parenting is messy business. Joyful, but messy. When faith is combined with parenting, we double down on the mess. Pastor and father of three Justin Lind-Ayres chronicles his adventures (and misadventures) raising children and passing on his faith to them--teaching them to be compassionate, generous, quick to forgive, and to trust in God's promises. But this father is sure to point out that it is children who are our best teachers in faith, opening our eyes and our hearts to God's love for us. In the messy and challenging moments of parenting, and in the joyful ones, God is fully present. And a God who knows your story–especially the messy parts–is a God who can redeem you.

With stories full of humor, honesty, and, yes, even some poop, this book is a welcome encouragement for parents, grandparents, and anyone who cares deeply for the children in their life.

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ISBN: 
9781506433004
Price: 
$16.99
ISBN: 
9781506449388
Price: 
$15.99
Release date: 
October 1, 2018
Pages: 
136
Width: 
5.50
Height: 
8.50

Endorsements

A decidedly honest, funny, and yes, messy book, Is That Poop on My Arm? is compulsively readable in every way.

"A decidedly honest, funny, and yes, messy book, Is That Poop on My Arm? is compulsively readable in every way. As a less-than-perfect Lutheran myself, there is so much to admire about Lind-Ayres’s writing and candor; he’s the kind of irreverent, thoughtful, and authentic theologian this world could use more of: unafraid to wade into the mess of this flawed world in search of beauty and grace. Thoroughly enjoyable."

Nickolas Butler | author of "Shotgun Lovesongs"

A beautiful braiding of the secular and the sacred that is by turns funny, poignant, and downright tear-inducing.

"Is That Poop on My Arm? is a lively and thoughtful offering of true stories from the author’s own experience as pastor, husband, and father. The insights that Justin Lind-Ayres offers readers and the real-life examples that illustrate them result in a beautiful braiding of the secular and the sacred that is by turns funny, poignant, and downright tear-inducing. Parents who are doing their best to raise their children in a Christian environment will find great encouragement and comfort in these pages. I only wish this book had been available when I was bringing up my kids."

William Kent Krueger | author of "Ordinary Grace"

A book to share and to treasure.

"The parenting life and the Christian life can sometimes feel like conflicting vocations: how on earth do we raise our children to love God and serve others, and follow in the way of Jesus, ourselves? What does it mean to live a faithful life in the glorious mess of parenting? Justin Lind-Ayres has traveled this road, and he is a wise and generous companion. He is also a preacher’s preacher, the kind you want walking right beside you, all the way. This is a book of luminous writing, breathtaking insight, and (frequently) laugh-out-loud earthiness—a book to share and to treasure."

Anna Carter Florence | Columbia Theological Seminary

A touching and poignant narrative that successfully captures the beautiful mess that is parenting in faith.

"Is That Poop on My Arm? is a touching and poignant narrative that successfully captures the beautiful mess that is parenting in faith. Justin Lind-Ayres seamlessly flows from parent to pastor, from prophet to student and always writes as an honest, vulnerable, and wise child of God. The chapters expertly and accessibly address themes from life and death to Cheerios and the Tooth Fairy, to stewardship and communion through the lens of precious childhood innocence. Is That Poop on My Arm? reminds us that our children are capable of preaching, teaching, and making our church better. They are, in fact, raising us. It is a gift to have faith like a child. I was pleasantly surprised to find myself both laughing and crying in the first chapter titled ‘Poop,’ and then I continued to laugh and cry reading every chapter thereafter. Lind-Ayres generously shares moments of deep intimacy with his children as they explore love, loss, giving, and belonging. He tells stories that are tender and true, oozing the good news of our gospel in ways both simple and profound. We get a front-row seat to moments between parent and child of blessing and being blessed, and in so doing, this book truly blesses us."

Ellie Roscher | author of "Play Like a Girl" and "How Coffee Saved My Life"

As a new pastor and parent, I could not put this book down!

"As a new pastor and parent, I could not put this book down! Justin Lind-Ayres’s Is That Poop on My Arm? will make you laugh and cry and give thanks to God over and over again for the children in your life. Lind-Ayres is a remarkable preacher and storyteller, inviting his readers to reflect on their own stories of heartache and joy. He helps us make sense of this wild world of parenting in faith—to celebrate the holiness of the messy parts, to listen to our children with wonder and curiosity, and to teach stewardship through the tooth fairy! I can't wait to buy this book for friends and share it with families where I serve."

Anna Helgen | pastor at Mount Olivet Lutheran Church, Minneapolis

You’ll never view poop on your arm or spit-up on your shoulder in the same way.

"Lind-Ayres’s honest storytelling illustrates a compelling portrait of a father embracing the vocation of parenthood and inviting you to do the same. He acknowledges the ‘raw beauty, earthy grace, and love beyond comprehension’ that characterize the best moments of parenting. He also has some moments where he definitely violates his household’s rules about potty talk. You’ll never view poop on your arm or spit-up on your shoulder in the same way after reading Lind-Ayres’s unflinching account of parenting while Christian."

Dawn Rundman | author of "Little Steps, Big Faith"

Lind-Ayres is a gifted writer whose metaphors and descriptions open us to see ordinary experiences afresh.  

"Lind-Ayres dares to be honest about messiness, both the messiness of poop and the messiness of faith. Perhaps only parents will see the connection at first, but whether or not we ever have children, most of us know that the life of faith is often messy rather than predictable. The author is a gifted writer whose metaphors and descriptions open us to see ordinary experiences afresh. 

Every chapter invites readers into these collisions between the mundane and the mysterious. Parenting while Christian isn’t easy. Lind-Ayres, the parent/pastor, admits, ‘It is easier to preach a sermon than it is to sit with small children during worship.’ While the author has done both, he honors the challenging work of respecting children as part of the congregation, rather than sending them away so the sanctuary will be quiet. ‘Maundy Thursday’ startles us with the anguishing pain of loss and the outpouring of communal love. The final chapter offers one of the most poignant pictures of the communion of saints I have read anywhere. But you’ll have to read to the end to see that picture with your own eyes."

Barbara K. Lundblad | emerita, Union Theological Seminary, New York

Is that Poop On My Arm? is as funny as the title suggests and a great deal deeper and more powerful.

"Justin Lind-Ayres’s Is that Poop On My Arm? is as funny as the title suggests and a great deal deeper and more powerful. The range of the book is vast, vacillating between the most mundane parenting topics, such as baby poop and the tooth fairy, and the most sublime faith topics, such as death, liturgy, and the Eucharist. Lind-Ayres weaves these together in a tapestry that is at once chaotic and seamlessly whole—much like real life. Ultimately, this story is a vulnerable, powerful testimony of one parent’s journey of teaching the faith to and being taught the faith by his children. May we all have the wisdom to serve and humbly learn from the littlest, whom God has placed in our lives and care."

Rachel Wrenn | pastor and PhD candidate at Emory University