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Don't Make Me Count to Three

4.06 of 5 stars 4.06  ·  rating details  ·  1,458 ratings  ·  170 reviews
Ginger Plowman encourages and equips moms to reach past the outward behavior of their children and dive deeply into the issues of the heart. Giinger's candid approach will help moms move beyond the frustrations of not knowing how to handle issues of disobedience and into a confident, well-balanced approach to raising their children.
Paperback, 155 pages
Published March 1st 2004 by Shepherd Press
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The Jesus Storybook Bible by Sally Lloyd-JonesA Dad After God's Own Heart by Jim GeorgeShepherding a Child's Heart by Tedd TrippGrace Based Parenting by Tim KimmelBoundaries with Kids by Henry Cloud
Christian Parenting
20th out of 72 books — 82 voters
What's Behind Your Belly Button? A Psychological Perspective ... by Martha Char LoveSimplicity Parenting by Kim John PayneNurtureShock by Po BronsonFor the Children's Sake by Susan Schaeffer MacaulayHoney for a Child's Heart by Gladys M. Hunt
8th out of 41 books — 19 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,905)
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This book really annoyed me and reminded me of all the things that did not reach my heart as a kid. For example, memorizing scriptures to correspond to my sins. I recited them, I smiled but it turned my heart against scripture. I still cannot read some of them without growling inside. The Bible is not a weapon, particularly when you hurl one verse at a kid and don't take the time to really study passage in context. There were several other big issues I had with it, basically, I did not find it e ...more
Wow, what a convicting book! Plowman gets right at the "heart" of the issue, as it were: you cannot expect to discipline your children rightly when your own motivations are not right - or, frankly, when your own heart is not right with God. I can see this may be prompting me to start memorizing scripture again...
Because another huge point the author make is that correcting your children needs to be done with a very deliberate grounding in scripture. I admit, a part of me rebels at this notion o
This book was worth my time and consideration, but I can't endorse it. The stars are for the information about the role of training in discipline. I have had to reconsider the parental short-cuts I take, rather than taking the time to firmly and patiently trouble-shoot conflicts and practice good behavior. A critical part of this training is helping the child examine their own heart and motives as they try to find a better way. Plowman demonstrates that punishment without training is not only ag ...more
Stephanie Sheaffer
This book comes on the heels of Shepherding a Child’s Heart. Clearly, the author is a huge Tripp fan and this book is essentially the same as his book – but in new packaging.

Before I share quotes from the text, I must point out that the cover of the book troubles me. A little girl is crossing her arms stubbornly. The mother is leaning over her with a spoon and a bottle of laxative…as if she is going to administer it to her daughter if she refuses to comply. [That image alone causes me to questio
May 09, 2010 Elizabeth rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: For people who liked Shepherding a Child's Heart
Shelves: parenting
I really liked this book, mostly for all the real-life examples the author gives regarding how she handles specific situations that also frequently arise in our family (i.e., sibling arguing, whining, tattling, selfishness, disrespect, not listening, etc.). Reading the book felt as if I was receiving some practical advice from a good friend who was a little further along in her parenting journey. In fact, I have already tried out a few of her suggestions. I was especially impacted when she empha ...more
After reading Shepherding a Child's Heart by Tedd Tripp many moons ago this was a great refresher on parenting to the heart of our children. How to draw out the foolishness (in the biblical definition) and replace it with biblical truth. Liked the emphasis on the word of God - knowing it, speaking it and living it in our homes. An easy read in terms of length but challenging. Challenging in that the author places responsibility, rightfully so, on the parents to know their children and seek the ...more
I loved this book as a very concise, practical guide to biblical discipline. She has great suggestions for how to talk to your children about their behavior, including what to do about whining, sibling fights, sharing, lying, etc. And she includes tons of scripture to back up her claims. My only criticism is that at the end, she assumes "the rod" of scripture must mean spanking but she never says why she doesn't believe "the rod" represents discipline in all its forms. Even so, I'll probably re- ...more
Angelyn Vaughan
What I liked:
- Emphasis on scripture, especially the list of verses to use in training children and in praying for children
- Punishment without training is cruel
- Difference between childish behavior (age appropriate) and foolish behavior (willful disobedience)
- Role playing to practice obedience for the future
- Learning to ask myself, "Am I angry because my will has been violated or because God's will has been violated?"
- Expect immediate obedience rather than tolerating bad behavior until I ge
Nathanael Gentilhomme
This was a great, insightful, biblical, quick read on godly parenting. Thought written by a mother, specifically for other moms, I recommend this to every dad out there as well (as, I myself am a dad who profited from reading this book). It is not deeply theological nor is it over simplistic. Plowman incorporates a wealth of Scripture references relating to specific aspects of parenting. Through here years of parenting, both wrong and right parenting, she brings a wealth of wisdom and experience ...more
Becky Sayler
Rather than just focusing on outward behavior, the author stresses the importance of our children’s need for inward cleansing. In every interaction, we should prayerfully consider how we can point our children to Christ. The author delves into the whys and hows of discipline and offers a lot of specific examples of what to say and how to encourage a change of behavior and a change of heart. A child’s duty – to obey parents “All the way, right away, and with a happy heart” – is something he or sh ...more
While this book had some good suggestions and was a worthwhile read for me, I probably wouldn't recommend it to someone else. The author comes off very self righteous and I don't agree with some of her methods. While I completely agree that God and the bible needs to be a big part of my home and raising/disciplining my children, she seems to take it too far. I was raised in a home where I felt the bible was "shoved down my throat" and this author takes what my mom did a step further. My heart wa ...more
Kendra Fletcher
It was hard for me to take a lot of this book seriously when the author's children were still under 10 when it was written. Not that the ages of her children negate the ideas here, just that her scope of experience was limited.
Excellent book about the importance of training our children in righteousness! It's an easy read and has a ton of biblical references for use in teaching our children.
Veronica Rapp
Helpful but not biblically sound.

I read this book as a follow up to Shepherding a Child's Heart. I appreciate that it gave me more in site on addressing the child's heart and also pointed out how many parenting methods just aren't addressing our responsibility in a Godly manner.

The part where she tell one how to be saved does not give proper information making it hard for me to recommend this book unless I am sure the person I'm making the recommendation to is already a true Christian.

In case yo
Light hearted dealing with the serious issue of growing our kids hearts.
Jessie Weaver
I have entered the age of parenting a crazy strong-willed toddler. I did like the idea behind this book: knowing the biblical WHY when we are disciplining our kids. Libbie has already started to recite, “The Bible says obey Mommy and Daddy.” But the author really stresses spanking. While I am not totally anti-spanking, I don’t think it should be our first response. And I’m not sure I buy her reasoning since it is all Old Testament-based. {Review is from 2011, when I read this. I think I agree ev ...more
Until now, the gold standard of raising children in a godly heart-seeking fashion had been Tedd Tripp's "Shepherding a Child's Heart" (for me and my circle of close parent friends anyway). I think we've found the new standard with Plowman's book. The problem I had with Tripp's book was the very unrealistic sample conversations he had that just did not apply to small children. Thus, though it was chock full of great theory and Biblical counseling on why we should be shepherding hearts and not act ...more
Katherine Salinas
As a good friend said, "if you liked Tedd Tripp's 'Shepherding a Child's Heart', (which I did) you will love this book." Tripp's book is right on the money explaining why as Christian parents we need to understand that discipline is a heart issue and that that is the only way to teach our kids their need for a Savior. This book takes that a step further and gives practical application to "training your children in righteousness." What does that really mean? What does that really look like in rea ...more
A very quick read. Has quite a few practical suggestions that a lot of parenting books skim over.
A few of her main points: "There is far more to parenting than getting our children to act right. We have to get them to think right and to be motivated out of a love of virtue rather than a fear of punishment." She then spends the remainder of the book demonstrating HOW she goes about this.

"As a rule, anytime you correct your child for wrong behavior, have him walk through right behavior."
She give
Mandy J. Hoffman

Do you struggle with a "mother-load" of guilt? Literally! Do you always have that nagging thought at the back of your mind that there has to be a better way "to do" this whole parenting thing?

I struggle on a daily basis with thoughts that I am not doing mothering the right way. Years ago I read the book Shepherding A Child's Heart and since I have read many other fabulous books on Biblical parenting. While the first one gave me a great theological foundation for the heart of parenting,
Leah Irby
To be completely honest with you...this book made me feel like an inadequate parent. This is cool, hence the 3 stars. I don't profess to be the BEST MOM EVER, no coffee cup or anything, but this book is certainly predicated on the assumption that I have it all together in the Christian living department, which, Goodreads world, I think we can all safely say I do not. I can quote Harry Potter a heck of a lot better in a pinch than Proverbs (though Rowling does have some sweet biblical references ...more
May 17, 2008 Stacey rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Sarah
Recommended to Stacey by: Pilar Parry
Shelves: parenting, favorites
I found this book an honest and biblical approach to parenting. While I really like Tedd Tripp's "Shepherding a Child's Heart" I feel as though he is writing from the perspective of a man who has an incredible testimoney of having raised his children biblically. Ginger Plowman writes as one in the trench. She takes Tripp's biblical ideas and gives them practical application. Tripp says when 2 children are fighting over a toy, they are both struggling with a heart issue--selfishness. True. Plowma ...more
I'm not sure where this book came from. Anyone else get books from the library or order them off of amazon without realizing it? Anyway, I saw it sitting on my bookshelf one day and I was in a hurry to go somewhere that likely involved a lot of waiting so I grabbed it as a quick read seeing as it was short.

My was I in shock when I saw the author mentioning her admiration for Tedd Tripp. I nearly dropped the book and ran away ( I believe my uncertainty of him and his book, Sheparding a Child's H
Peter Krol
Ginger Plowman gives us a pretty anecdotal book about heart-oriented discipline of children. I thought her insights were rooted in Scripture and clearly presented.

One refrain that really struck me was, "I love you too much to allow you to disobey." This statement was repeated often in the book, and comes right out of Prov 13:24. It is so easy as a parent to allow my children to disobey, and to think that I'm loving them by doing that (I don't want to be too harsh, after all). Actually, when I do
John Brackbill
This book is directed toward Christian mothers. Why was I reading it? Well, on page 20 I was wondering that as well (I will let you find out what I am referring to). I was reading it because I knew that things mothers need to be doing in training their children fathers need to be doing as well-assuming that the book was going to point me to Scripture. I was also reading it because as a pastor I would like to recommend good books for parents in general and fathers and mothers specifically. Having ...more
Since I've already read most of the books she sources (Shepherding a Child's Heart, The Heart of Anger), this book was a good reminder of how to parent biblically. It was full of helpful, practical tips to train up a child in the way he should go. The author handles common objections/thinking with gentleness but straightforwardness. I appreciated how she does not put on a facade of being a perfect parent or even the expert, but tries to relate to the reader. I'd recommend to others.
The minister for Women's Ministries gave me this book last year and descibed it as the practical application of Sheperding a Child's Heart. So it has sat on my shelf for almost a year, until I did my great spring cleaning and purged our house of stuff. And I looked at the yet-another-parenting-book and wanted to chuck it in the give-away pile. But I told myself - you better just read before you pass it along. So I was refreshed to by this "easy-read" which gave some good examples of HOW to talk ...more
This book made some good points, but I thought it was weak overall.

One of my biggest problems with this book is with the writing. It was simplistic at times, and in at least one place I can't imagine how the writing made it past an editor's eye (an entire line—or more—missing from a paragraph in an appendix).

If the ideas were thorough and well-argued, the writing wouldn't bother me so much. When there were good points to be made, such as with the importance of reaching a child's heart in discip
A wonderful parenting book. If you liked Shepherding a Child's Heart, then you will LOVE this one. GP bases her thoughts on Shep and then gives practical examples and things to do. She also spends a lot of time talking about not just to tell your child what not to do but to tell them the good to put on as well. And she uses scripture in how to instruct in doing this.
Its a great reminder of why we do this thing called parenting and that the goal isn't little robots who obey but people whose hear
This is a challenging book-- not because it is difficult to read; it isn't. It is challenging because it reminds the reader that a child just learning "right" and "wrong" isn't enough. There is a why behind that. There is a heart related issue, because none of us are perfect, and we are all born sinners. As a mom, it is my job to not teach my children to not do something just because it's "wrong." WHY is it wrong? What does the Lord say about this behavior? It calls you to a difficult way of par ...more
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Publishes under the names: Ginger Hubbard & Ginger Plowman Hubbard

Ginger Hubbard, founder of Preparing the Way Ministries, is the author of Guiltless Living, Don’t Make Me Count to Three, Wise Words for Moms and No More Whining. She is a contributing author of several books, including Rest Stops for Busy Moms and The Groovy Chicks Road Trip to Peace.
More about Ginger Plowman...
Wise Words for Moms Heaven at Home: Establishing and Enjoying a Peaceful Home No More Whining: Three Easy Steps To Whine-Free Living The Groovy Chicks' Road Trip to Peace

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“Being a mom is more than being cook, chauffeur, maid, counselor, doctor, referee, disciplinarian, etc. (just to name a few). It’s about molding character, building confidence, nurturing, training, and guiding.” 1 likes
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