Never Say No (David C. Cook, May 2015)

The question Mark and Jan Foreman are most often asked is: How did you raise your kids?

Mark and Jan Foreman’s adult sons Jon and Tim Foreman of Switchfoot have influenced their world not only by a successful music career but also through their positive impact on communities around the globe. The Foreman parents instilled in their sons a belief that they could make a difference by living beyond themselves.

This powerful book gives readers an inside look at the process. It begins with both parent and child finding their identity in God. It then explores practical ways to encourage holistic learning while cultivating specific gifts, nurturing creativity in a media-saturated culture, and balancing structure with individual choice. Never Say No inspires readers to raise children to live in the wonder of life by loving others well. Parents will find encouragement for their own parenting journey as they guide their kids to live out God’s purpose in radical ways. 

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About the authors:

Jan and Mark Foreman live in the San Diego area, where Mark is lead pastor of North Coast Calvary Chapel. Mark is the author of Wholly Jesus, and holds advanced degrees in Theology, Education and a Ph.D. in Counseling and Pastoral Care. Jan is a gifted teacher, artist, and she also facilitates partnerships with underprivileged women and children both locally and in developing countries. Together they love surfing, sailing, travel and especially being with their family.

My thoughts: No means No. Maybe means No. Sometimes Yes turns into No. These are universal rules that most kids know. At least knew. But Mark and Jan Foreman are ushering in the Never Say No era of parenting in their book of the same title and this is not the over-indulgent yes to everything mode of parenting where everyone wins everything. This is parenting where there is always an alternative to NO. Finding alternative choices and paths that work for the individual are stressed over negative reinforcement. I really like the way this reinforces positive self-esteem and enhances problem solving skills. Not just for children but for parents as well. When we know we are being good parents and following our path, what does this teach our children? Simple yet profound, really. AND Never Say No even works on dogs. (See new puppy picture below). Instead of No, Don’t, Stop we are actually teaching our new dog of two weeks positive reinforcement and watching our eleven-year-old daughter implement these practices with him while we implement them with her. The Foremans CAN teach old dogs and new dogs these tricks!

Leo, our new puppy

Leo, our new puppy