Quiz: What Kind of Christian Parent Are You?

Quiz: What Kind of Christian Parent Are You?I’m very excited to share with you today the official website for my forthcoming book, Keeping Your Kids on God’s Side: 40 Conversations to Help Them Build a Lasting Faith!

CLICK HERE TO SEE IT!

I turned the manuscript over to my publisher in April, but in the last few months, I’ve been getting it to prospective endorsers (both apologetics professionals and “regular” parents) and building the site. You’d be amazed how much time all that takes. So today feels like a big milestone…to finally present it to you, my loyal blog readers!

As you’ll see when you click over, I’ve been incredibly blessed to receive endorsements for the book from several apologists I greatly admire. The foreword was written by J. Warner Wallace, author of Cold-Case Christianity and God’s Crime Scene. If you’ve read my blog for a while, you know how much I love Det. Wallace’s work. When he offered to write the foreword for my book, I really couldn’t believe it. He was very generous with his kind words in the foreword, and you can read an excerpt under “Endorsements” (I’ll post the full foreword closer to launch date).

Now, all of this said, I didn’t want to write a post where I just pointed you to the new site and asked you to pre-order if you like what you see. I wanted to make this fun, so I’ve developed a self-assessment quiz to go with this announcement:

What kind of Christian parent are you?

Here’s how it works. I believe there are four factors that determine what kind of Christian parent you are: time, the importance you place on your kids growing up to be Christ-followers, how necessary you feel working on your kids’ spiritual development at home is, and how knowledgeable about Christianity you are.

For each of these factors below, figure out which of the two profiles best describes you. Write the letter down. When you’re done, you should have a four-letter profile (e.g., TING). (This is similar to how a Myers-Briggs test works, if you’ve done that before.) Then scroll down the results section to find your profile. I’ll describe you a bit from the quiz and then explain how my book can help YOU specifically!

The quiz shouldn’t take you more than 5 minutes and (warning!) it might really make you think.

 

FACTOR 1: TIME

How much available time do you have for developing your kids’ spiritual life at home (praying together, having meaningful faith conversations, and studying the Bible outside of church)?

1. I wouldn’t say I have tons of time (who does?) but, realistically, there are various places in our family’s week where we can put intentional effort into our kids’ spiritual development (that doesn’t mean you necessarily are putting the time in, but that you could).

Give yourself: T

2. Close to zero, or negative. I’m stretched to the max between what’s required of the kids at school, extracurricular activities, and/or my work schedule. It feels like my only free time is in the bathroom, and even there someone or something usually needs my attention.

Give yourself: M

 

FACTOR 2: IMPORTANCE

Be very honest with yourself in answering this question: How important is it to you that your kids grow up to be whole-hearted Christ-followers (as opposed to following any other worldview)?

1. I’m a Christian, so of course I’m sharing what I believe with my kids. But I know they will eventually have to make their own decision about what they believe and they may not decide to be Christians. I’d like for them to be Christians, but I believe there are other ways they can come to God outside of Jesus.

Give yourself: P

2. There’s nothing more important to me than raising kids who will follow Jesus, because I believe it’s a matter of their eternal destiny. If they do eventually reject Christianity, I will be heartbroken and continually pray for them to return to the Lord.

Give yourself: I

 

FACTOR 3: NECESSITY

How necessary do you think it is for Christian parents to be proactively involved in their kids’ spiritual development at home (praying, having meaningful faith conversations, and studying the Bible on a regular basis)?

1. Very necessary! We may or may not always do what I know we should be doing, but I believe we are called to actively work on our kids’ spiritual development at home. I also believe that the time we spend on our kids’ spiritual development greatly impacts the strength of their faith.

Give yourself: N

2. Of course more is better, but realistically, I think our kids get most of what they need for their spiritual development at church. Honestly, I don’t think that doing more at home would change my kids’ spiritual lives in a hugely significant way. Just tellin’ it like it is.

Give yourself: O

 

FACTOR 4: KNOWLEDGE

How confident do you feel in your understanding of Christianity and your ability to answer the tough questions skeptics are asking about the Christian faith?

1. I’m no Bible scholar, but I know what’s important…that Jesus died for my sins so I could be made right with God and live with Him for eternity. And, of course, I live my life on Earth accordingly and teach my kids to do the same. That said, I don’t feel I could confidently respond to many of the complex questions my kids will hear…questions like: What evidence is there that God exists? How can evil exist if God is good? What historical evidence is there that Jesus came back from the dead? Why should anyone believe miracles are even possible? Are faith and science opposites? Why do Christians have varying views on the age of the Earth and evolution? Those kinds of questions are beyond what I’m comfortable with right now.

Give yourself: G

2. Everyone always has room to learn more, but I definitely invest time in continually deepening my understanding of Christianity—including how to make the case for and defend my faith against the common attacks from the secular world. I feel pretty confident that when my kids ask questions, I have a good idea of how to respond and can guide them to a deeper understanding of their faith.

Give yourself: E

 

RESULTS

 

You should have put down four letters for yourself—one for each factor. For example, if you answered M on factor 1, I on factor 2, N on factor 3, and G on factor 4, you would be a “MING” Christian parent. Scroll below to find your type, read your profile, and see how my book can help you! (No need to read every description.) I’m not going to put a link to the book under every description, so if you decide you’d like to pre-order, just click here.

 

MING

You feel spiritual development at home is both important and necessary. That’s a major step toward where you need to be as a Christian parent! However, you’re feeling totally maxed out on time, and, probably because of that, you haven’t taken your understanding of Christianity to the next level so you can comfortably answer tough questions about faith. Since you already believe in the importance and necessity of spiritual training at home, you probably won’t argue with the following reminder: Having time for spiritual development is really a matter of priorities. If your family is overbooked with a hectic lifestyle, it’s time to get back to the realization that God must come first. Start by setting aside just 30 minutes this week to pray together, have a faith conversation, or study the Bible with your kids. My book can’t create time in your life, but once you’ve appropriately adjusted your priorities, it’s a great next step for taking your knowledge (factor 4) to the next level. The 40 conversations in my book can function like a family curriculum and give you the guidance you need to get serious once again (or for the first time!) about faith in your home. As you know, there’s nothing more important.

 

MINE

MINE parents, you are an interesting group! You know that spiritual development at home is both important and necessary, and you’re equipped with a more robust knowledge of your faith than most other parents, but you just don’t have time to execute what you know you need to. For some of you, you just need a reminder that you’ve fallen into the trap of an overly hectic schedule and need to adjust priorities again. For others, you might be in a particularly difficult season of your life where time really is a legitimate problem. Whatever the reason, my book isn’t going to fix the time issue. Only you can evaluate that in light of what you already know to be important and necessary for your kids’ spiritual development. But when you’re ready, I think you’ll find my book to be a very handy resource to simplify the answers to 40 key questions you should discuss with your kids. Even if you already can articulate the answers to many of them, you’ll find approaches that will be specifically helpful for you in the role of a parent. Be sure to check out the table of contents, as you might even find several topics that are new to you!

 

MIOG

If I could take a survey of parents who took this quiz, I’m betting the greatest number would be MIOGs. MIOGs are parents who very much care what their kids grow up to believe (as indicated by the “I” for Importance factor), but they feel like their kids will get most of what they need to learn at church, are maxed out on time, and (probably because of those two factors) haven’t committed to deepening their own understanding of Christianity. If you’re a MIOG, I’m not so concerned about you feeling maxed out on time; if you believed that spiritual development at home was more necessary (as opposed to at church alone), you would make it a priority and make the time work for you. I really want MIOGs to have my book. In fact, I’d say that I spent much of the time writing the book with MIOGs in mind. I hope my book will introduce you to the big faith challenges today that you may not yet be aware of, demonstrate why your kids won’t be equipped to handle those challenges simply by going to church each week, and encourage you to journey deeper into your faith with a new-found understanding of what you believe. This book will definitely help equip both you and your kids.

 

MIOE or TIOE

It’s hard to imagine many parents in these two groups. It’s very important to you what your kids believe, and you’ve equipped yourself with a more robust knowledge of your faith than most other parents, but you still believe your kids will learn most of what they need to know for their spiritual development at church. That leads me to believe that you either have the most amazing church in the world (that addresses everything imaginable for your kids), or that you’re not as equipped with an understanding of today’s challenges as perhaps you thought. See, if you look at the table of contents from my book as an example, the vast majority of those questions are not discussed at church. Yet they are critical for your kids to understand. I really believe my book will help you further understand the significance of the challenges your kids will face, and why it’s so important that we address those questions at home. By seeing how accessible the answers are (only about 6 pages per question), I think you’ll be more motivated to start having these conversations in your own home. If you’re an MIOE, you may be maxed out on time, but I think that when you have a deeper understanding of the challenges your kids will face, you’ll make spiritual training a priority. If you’re a TIOE, you already can see time in your week you can devote to this…now you just need the conviction to make it a priority.

 

MPNG or MPOG

 If you’ve arrived here, I want to talk to you specifically about the “P” in your profile. If you gave yourself a P, it means that you don’t necessarily believe that your kids’ eternal destiny rests in their faith in Jesus specifically. If that’s the case, I very much understand why you’re not making an effort to set aside more time for spiritual development—why make the effort when you’re already maxed out on time and you believe your kids can eventually make it to God in one way or another? From my experiences with MPNGs and MPOGs in my personal life, I think many people end up in this category because they aren’t fully aware of how much evidence there really is for the exclusive truth of Christianity. They tend to think that faith is simply a matter of opinion and that there’s no real way to determine which religion is true. MPNG and MPOG friends, I want you to know that you really can be more certain of your beliefs! In my book, you’ll learn all about the objective evidence for God, why multiple religions can’t point to the same truth, what historical evidence exists for the resurrection, and much more! Be sure to look at the table of contents and see what you’ll learn. I think you’ll end up being much more convicted of your faith, and ready to make a big spiritual difference in your kids’ lives.

The reason I’ve lumped MPNG and MPOG together is that I’m not sure how anyone would end actually up with an MPNG profile. If you aren’t convicted of the exclusive truth of Christianity, it seems unlikely that you would simultaneously feel it’s very necessary to work on your kids’ spiritual development at home. M, P, and G go much more naturally with the O (a belief that kids will get most of what they need at church). If you truly are an MPNG, please drop a comment below and explain it to me!

 

MPNE or MPOE

If you’re an MPNE or MPOE, please read the above MPNG/MPOG description first. It applies to you as well.

Now, what I need to add to that profile for you is a question about your E. If you’ve really dug into your faith, but still aren’t convinced that it is exclusively true, or that your kids’ eternal souls really do hang in the balance of what they believe, then I suggest you focus on those key questions first. It seems you have some unresolved doubts. Part 2 of my book is on Truth and Worldviews and is especially relevant for you. It will succinctly answer questions like: What is the difference between objective and subjective truth? Do all religions point to the same truth? How can Christians know what is objectively true? How can personal experience help determine what is true? How can common sense help determine what is true? If Christianity is true, why are there so many denominations? Be sure to check out the full table of contents, as you’re likely to see many other questions that you may well have been grappling with. I believe my book will help strengthen your own faith, which will then make a meaningful difference in what you do with your kids’ spiritual development.

I combined MPNE and MPOE for the same reason as I described with MPNG/MPOG. I doubt there are many MPNEs. M, P, and E more naturally fit with the O (a belief that kids will get most of what they need at church).

 

TING

TING parents, you are in a beautiful place! You understand that spiritual development at home is both important and necessary, and those are the major foundational beliefs every Christian parent needs. In addition to that, you acknowledge that your busyness isn’t too busy to fit in needed time for your kids’ spiritual development. The factor you most need to focus on now is deepening your understanding of the tough faith challenges the secular world is asking today so you can gift your kids with the knowledge of how to make the case for and defend Christianity. My book would be a perfect starting place for you! You’ll gain awareness of what 40 of the most important faith challenges are today, read easy-to-understand answers that you can work through with your kids (only about 6 pages each!), and come away with a resource you can refer back to repeatedly over time. I’m biased, but I think TINGs will especially appreciate what the book offers.

 

TINE

Wow, TINEs! You are doing awesome! You understand that spiritual development at home is both important and necessary, you know how to make time in your schedule for those efforts, and you’ve made the commitment to invest time in continually deepening your understanding of Christianity—including how to make the case for and defend your faith against the common attacks from the secular world. Even though it sounds like you’re well-versed in the challenges to Christianity, I think you’ll find my book to be a really handy reference tool. Each of the 40 chapters covers a big question in just 6 pages each, so it simplifies the topics in a way you can easily discuss with your kids. If you’re a TINE, I would also ask that you share information on the book with other Christian parents you know. TINEs already understand what’s at stake with Christian parenting today, so I would love for you to partner with me in getting this information into more hands.

 

TIOG

 As a TIOG, you very much care what your kids will grow up to believe (as indicated by the “I” for your Importance factor), but you feel like your kids will get most of what they need to learn at church, and (probably because of that) you haven’t committed to deepening your own understanding of Christianity. TIOGs, I would very much love to get my book into your hands. I really believe it will convict you of the need to take ownership of your kids’ spiritual development at home. My book will introduce you to big faith challenges you may not yet be aware of, demonstrate why your kids won’t be equipped to handle those challenges simply by going to church each week, and encourage you to journey deeper into your faith with a new-found understanding of what you believe. I’m so glad that you acknowledged you have time you could devote to your kids’ spiritual development each week; my book will give you a great place to start with them.

 

TPNG or TPOG

If you’ve arrived here, I want to talk to you specifically about the “P” in your profile. If you gave yourself a P, it means that you don’t necessarily believe that your kids’ eternal destiny rests in their faith in Jesus specifically. From my experiences with TPNGs and TPOGs in my personal life, I think many people end up in this category because they aren’t fully aware of how much evidence there really is for the exclusive truth of Christianity. They tend to think that faith is simply a matter of opinion and that there’s no real way to determine which religion is true. TPNG and TPOG friends, I want you to know that you really can be more certain of your beliefs! In my book, you’ll learn all about the objective evidence for God, why multiple religions can’t point to the same truth, what historical evidence exists for the resurrection, and much more! Be sure to look at the table of contents and see what you’ll learn. I think you’ll end up being much more convicted of your faith, and ready to make a big spiritual difference in your kids’ lives. I’m really glad that you’ve already acknowledged you can make time for spiritual development in your home. Now you just need the convictional motivation to do so.

The reason I’ve lumped TPNG and TPOG together is that I’m not sure how anyone would end actually up with a TPNG profile. If you aren’t convicted of the exclusive truth of Christianity, it seems unlikely that you would simultaneously feel it’s very necessary to work on your kids’ spiritual development at home. T, P, and G go much more naturally with the O (a belief that kids will get most of what they need at church). If you truly are a TPNG, please drop a comment below and explain it to me!

 

TPNE or TPOE

If you’re a TPNE or TPOE, please read the above TPNG/TPOG description first. It applies to you as well.

Now, what I need to add to that profile for you is a question about your E. If you have really dug into your faith, but still aren’t convinced that it is exclusively true, or that your kids’ eternal souls really do hang in the balance of what they believe, then I suggest you focus on those key questions first. It seems you have some unresolved doubts. Part 2 of my book is on Truth and Worldviews and is especially relevant for you. It will succinctly answer questions like: What is the difference between objective and subjective truth? Do all religions point to the same truth? How can Christians know what is objectively true? How can personal experience help determine what is true? How can common sense help determine what is true? If Christianity is true, why are there so many denominations? Be sure to check out the full table of contents, as you’re likely to see many other questions that you may well have been grappling with. I believe my book will help strengthen your own faith, which will then make a meaningful difference in what you do with your kids’ spiritual development.

I combined TPNE and TPOE for the same reason as I described with TPNG/TPOG. I doubt there are many TPNEs. T, P, and E more naturally fit with the O (a belief that kids will get most of what they need at church).

 

Did you enjoy this quiz? Please share it with others! I’d love to hear your comments about your profile below. But if your profile missed some fine psychological or spiritual points, please forgive me and don’t freak out. This was just for fun, though I do hope it will encourage people to think more about their family’s spiritual development!

7 Comments

  1. Jen Harwood on October 22, 2015 at 7:20 AM

    That’s great Natasha – and I was really impressed with your book’s site and all of your endorsements! I like your quiz too – it must have taken tons of time to put together!



  2. Rosann on October 22, 2015 at 7:27 AM

    LOVE it! 😀 I’m a TING parent. Lol! Quiz or no quiz I plan to get your book because I knew from the moment I heard you were writing it that it would be a huge benefit to our family’s faith and understanding of Christianity. Continuing to pray for you in the book launch process. (((Hugs)))



  3. Beth on October 22, 2015 at 8:17 AM

    I’m a TING thanks to your blog but because of your blog I’m becoming more of a TINE! One of the first posts of yours I read some years ago was “60 Questions”. I had been convicted that church and Jesus was only something we did on Sundays and even though I desperately wanted to bring Jesus into our home as the true center of our lives, I really didn’t know how to or what that looked like in practical terms. God has used your words to grow my understanding of Him and has spurred me on to take ownership of seeking Him for myself. Not just leaving it up to Sunday school classes and sermons.
    Your book will be a blessing to so many!



  4. Purplecandy on October 22, 2015 at 12:58 PM

    I’m a TPNG. Well, not exactly a P. I don’t believe there are other ways to God than Jesus, but I think there are other ways to God through Jesus than the education I will give my children. I really struggle with this P / N issue : of course teaching them is a necessity but at the same time it is no guarantee…
    I don’t know if I am making myself clear… I became Christian at 20, after being raised in an atheistic family and environment, and though I lack knowledge when it comes to christianity ( that’s why I like your blog so much!), at the same time, I know from experience that most of this knowledge was not necessary for me to have faith. It might be useful to strengthen my faith, or communicate it, but knowing God is way beyond head knowledge. That’s why I think teaching is necessary, but that encounter between my kids and God is really not up to me, despite my true desire for them to experience it… Does that make sense?



  5. Purplecandy on October 22, 2015 at 1:02 PM

    Oh, and sorry if you’ve said it somewhere but is your book going to be available in ebook for kindle?



  6. Liz on October 22, 2015 at 2:06 PM

    I am happy to be a TPNG parent, and I assure you I am not a unicorn, I do exist.

    Raising my children to be wholehearted followers of the way of Jesus is of great importance to me. My reading of scripture and my own spiritual life have taught me that following the religion, or the way Jesus taught is not the same thing as following a religion about Jesus. When Jesus himself interacted with people of different religious beliefs, such as Samaratins, Greeks and Romans, it was with respect and he often used them as examples of what his dream – the Kingdom of Heaven/God (mt,mk/lk) Eternal Life (Jn) is like.

    I am both Bible College and seminary educated(6 years total) In the language of evangelical Christianity, I was ‘saved’ 26 years ago. From before that time until the present I have been a dedicated follower of Jesus. From his example, I have learned to judge trees by their fruit. I want my children to know people of integrity, whose lives exude love, joy ,peace, patience, kindness, gentleness and self-control, and who orient their lives through different religions and world views.

    The sacred creative presence at the heart of the universe has been revealed to me in Jesus, but is not bound to any single religion



  7. Rebecca on October 26, 2015 at 11:48 AM

    Thanks for this quiz. It really did make me think, and even though my results are promising, I know my husband and I can do more.