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On a weekly basis, I will see memes come on social media that hint at days gone by when childhood seemed less scary than it does in today’s world. Days when parents booted you out the door to play with the other kids in the neighborhood and explore the world around you. In our society today, it seems like everything has to be planned out and programmed with safety at the front of everyone’s mind.
About Their Name is Today: Reclaiming Childhood in a Hostile World
Is there any hope for childhood? Will 2014 be remembered as the year when children spent more time in virtual worlds than with their parents? In Their Name is Today, Johann Arnold reviews sweeping changes in the way our society treats children. He also addresses technology, standardized testing, overstimulation, academic pressure, marketing to children, over-diagnosis and much more, calling on everyone who loves children to cobalt these thetas to childhood and help children flourish.
Their Name Is Today: Reclaiming Childhood in a Hostile World is available on Amazon for $10.59 in paperback or $7.69 in Kindle.
Who is Johann Christoph Arnold, author of Their Name is Today: Reclaiming Childhood in a Hostile World?
Johann Christoph Arnold is an award-winning author with over 1.3 million copies of his books in print in more than 20 languages. A noted speaker and writer on marriage, parenting, and end-of-life issues, Arnold is a senior pastor of the Bruderhof, a movement of Christian communities. With his wife, Verena, he has counseled thousands of individuals and families over the last forty years. His books include Their Name Is Today, Why Forgive?, Rich in Years, Seeking Peace, Cries from the Heart, Be Not Afraid, and Why Children Matter.
Arnold’s message has been shaped by encounters with great peacemakers such as Martin Luther King Jr., Mother Teresa, César Chavez, and John Paul II. Together with paralyzed police officer Steven McDonald, Arnold started the Breaking the Cycle program, working with students at hundreds of public high schools to promote reconciliation through forgiveness. This work has also brought him to conflict zones from Northern Ireland to Rwanda to the Middle East. Closer to home, he serves as chaplain for the local sheriff’s department.
Born in Britain in 1940 to German refugees, Arnold spent his boyhood years in South America, where his parents found asylum during the war; he immigrated to the United States in 1955. He and his wife have eight children, 44 grandchildren, and one great-grandchild. They live in upstate New York.
To learn more visit www.plough.com
My Thoughts on Their Name is Today: Reclaiming Childhood in a Hostile World
This is not a title to just fly through when you read. Rather, you’ll want to digest what Johann has shared and formulate ideas of how you can take this information about help your own children enjoy a childhood.
There are many things that I’ve been taking note of in this title and I am only going to share a few of them here.
One of the things that struck me is his take on ADHD. I’ve heard some blame our poor diet and chemicals in the environment on this disorder. But, Johann goes further by saying that it is nothing more than a defense against over-structuring. I can see how for many that could be the case. Schools want complacent children who are subdued and there are teachers who have almost their entire class on Ritalin. I have one son that I anticipated would have issues in a classroom setting. He was fine in kindergarten, but I often think about the adjustment he would have had in 1st grade where there wasn’t playtime and extra recess built into the day. Even as a teenager he has a NEED to move, whether it is his whole body or parts of it. I am glad we decided to start homeschooling which allows him more wiggle room and definitely far less rigidity in our days.
You can see the influence of others in the pages as he will quote many of the more modern peacemakers. I have a soft spot for Saint Teresa of Calcutta (who many knew as Mother Teresa) and consider myself fortunate to have heard her speak many years ago in New Orleans. This small in stature and seemingly meek in spirit woman could speak truth that would floor you. Johann mentions her during his chapter on the material child.
If you think your child is not influenced by ‘stuff’, then I’d encourage a second look. I know that my husband and I have been guilty of showering them with things in a misguided effort to show them our love or just grab some piece and quiet at the store. What we end up with when on that materialistic path is a house full of clutter and kids who think they deserve whatever their little hearts desire…and right then!
So, be prepared to be both challenged and encouraged in your role as parent as you read this title. But, the end result could be a happier family with eyes on what is most important in life.
Guess what? One lucky reader will win their own copy of this title. Just pop on over to the Their Name is Today: Reclaiming Childhood in a Hostile World giveaway post to enter by 11/9/14. US & Canada only
Do you feel like your children are missing out on a childhood?