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Fathered by God: Learning What Your Dad Could Never Teach You

4.31  ·  Rating details ·  1,482 ratings  ·  113 reviews
There is a path leading to authentic manhood, cut by men who have gone before us, sons following in the footsteps of their fathers, generation after generation. There are perils along the trail, even disasters?all the more reason to rely on the guidance of a Father who has gone before.

But in an age when true fathers are in short supply, how do you find the path to manhood?
Paperback, 240 pages
Published April 20th 2009 by Thomas Nelson (first published 2009)
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Nov 11, 2009 is currently reading it
The first chapter is about boyhood, the earliest stage of our life when the world is a place of adventure and suprises, when we are learning and exploring. Eldredge says that the most important thing for a boy is that he feels like he is the beloved son. Not just approved of in his fathers heart, but adored and prized completely by his father. For a lot of men, we were wounded in our boyhood. Some of our fathers didn't spend much time with us. Some never taught us anything important and we felt ...more
Phil Lemons
Dec 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: man-up, 2016-reads
Strong medicine

This book has some strong soul medicine. However, I wouldn't recommend reading this until after reading Wild At Heart. Its like starting with the second book of the series. While you can figure it out, it doesn't come as naturally.

The overall theme on the stages of masculinity is an interesting concept. I appreciate the approach Eldridge takes to explain that the stages are not rigid timelines, but are fluid based on a man's personal journey.

Deeper still are points that apply sa
Joe Colley
Apr 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
If Wild at Heart reveals something deeper about you and places a desire within you to reclaim your identity, then this book gives you a sense of direction to be able to do that. A tremendously insightful book into what it means to live as a son of God and how to learn and grow in each stage of life. I first thought Eldredge’s different stages were gimmicky but quickly realized how accurately they apply to my life and where I have felt incomplete.
Brandon H.
An updated version of Eldridge's "The Way of the Wild Heart." Very, very good. I still haven't found a book on manhood that surpasses this one.
Jan 22, 2013 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Young Christian Men
Eldredge does a very good job here of outlining what masculinity looks like, though I wonder if he ends up to culturally biased with his anecdotes of fishing, hiking, camping, and mountaineering. His earlier stages (Boyhood, Cowboy, Warrior) do a solid job anyway of outlining the stages and the Biblical basis for them. This likely also has something to do with Eldredge being old enough to reflect on and write about these stages with some authority and distance. The later stages, however (Lover, ...more
Gabriel-paul Israel
Aug 08, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. I've often found that the books that are written specifically for one gender are highly beneficial to both genders. I find that the sections of the book that are expository for the benefit of the reader by a grown man about having moments of feeling incometent are incredibly important. Reading about the different stages of masculinity are usually not thought about by the average reader and they are just as important for women to know as they are for men to know. I find that th ...more
Jennifer Harsh
I really love John Eldredge's writings I had just finished Wild at Heart and dived into this one. It flowed really well at first but after a bit I had a hard time finishing it out, until getting to the last chapter. It seems the last chapter of every book I read of his corresponds to the current events I am dealing with in my life now. He wraps it up well. I liked Wild at Heart better this was more in depth, but I am a female, though I am a female I do feel either the information is still pertin ...more
Gerald Thomson
Feb 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
Though the message is similar to Wild at Heart, I enjoyed Fathered by God much more. Maybe I am in a better place to receive Eldredge’s message. It also felt like there was a bit more humility in this offering. Maybe time has been good for Eldredge. His view of the masculine journey certainly gets one to take pause and examine where you have been and where you are going. If you have not read Eldredge, this is a great place to start. This would also be helpful for parents of boys.
Jan 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This was the first book I read after my divorce this past summer. It helped me to process through some of my pain and realize that I have a loving Father in Heaven who only wants me to come to Him. I feel that I have much to learn about what my mortal journey holds, nut this book helped me realize that I needn't do it alone. For that, I'm grateful.
Nov 19, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Sometimes it's hard for a son to see flaws in a father who seems perfect. Eldredge's book quickly shows that my love for my son, and my father's love for me, pails in comparison to God's love. This book is a great read for fathers.
Dec 14, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This book has been amazing for me! About to begin a second time through with a study guide. It is helping me better understand some of the gaps from my childhood and how to relate to God as my heavenly father.
Isaiah Walker
May 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book— for any Christian man, young or old— is one to study and meditate on. It brings to light what true manhood is in the eyes of God. In these modern times we have been corrupted and tricked into thinking manhood is large muscles, big trucks, tobacco using, alcohol drinking, and one night stand kinds of men. Fathered by God enlightens us and shows that these are not real men at all— only males that have so much insecurity and fear within them they have to disguise who they really are by t ...more
Michael Evans
Apr 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Everyone receives differently. Some want the type A seven steps books. I’m different. I need the philosophy & the why behind the what of life. If you want to know about manhood, why we are who we are & where we are going, this book will take you on the path of life spoken of in Psalm 16:11.
My suggestion is read Wild by Heart first, then this book and then The Way of the Wild Heart last which is an amalgamation of both. If you can share with someone else or read it with another man or a few. I d
May 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
Good book for men, if you are a Christ follower. This book will remind that their is more to manhood than simply age. There is a process in the life of a man that if followed will lead to better understanding, and if neglected can cause wounds and issues. He notes that every man begins as a boy who asks himself the question "Do I have what it takes?". This is a slightly different represented version of the well known book "Wild at Heart" (which the author acknowledges). I would recommend you sta ...more
Jun 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
The real content of this book is valuable, but it is buried underneath dozens of illustrations, references, and purple prose. Wild at Heart spoke powerfully to me as a new believer in Christ, but I haven't read any other Eldredge in nearly 10 years. After seeing this book recommended as a follow up to Wild at Heart, I felt like diving back in to see if this kind of material would still stir and lead to reflection - it definitely did. However, towards the end of the book, I was skipping towards t ...more
Dec 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fatherhood
This is thought provoking book that describes the role of fatherhood in it's various stages and connects it to our heavenly Father and the ways he Fathers us. My father was not a great example of a man in many areas but Eldredge made me reflect on my own father, his role, weaknesses, and even strengths that I was reluctant to acknowledge. When you realize that the Heavenly Father fathers you through His Words, as well as other men that he places in your life to help guide you in the journey and ...more
Gary B
Jan 31, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2020
John traces the desirable (God-ordained) path a man needs to take from boyhood through a cowboy stage, to a warrior, lover and king - hopefully eventually arriving as a sage in the 60+ age group.

There was some helpful material and observations in the book. I can see some areas where my "fathering" wasn't adequate or complete. John outlines some approaches and prayers that can move us along if needed.

Some people (John included) suggest one should read Wild at Heart first. I tried reading that a d
Tim  Franks
Mar 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is the best book that I believe the author has written. The purpose of this book is understanding why we are hurt and have wounds as men, fathers, and husbands. He looks at the stages from childhood to the sage at the end of life. I was struck by the reasons we often fail as men beyond just the broad idea of the sin nature. Many things come from how we were raised and pass on to our own wives and children. I struggled some with John's focus on his likes as defining men and often falling int ...more
Dec 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
If his Wild at Heart was an introduction to masculinity defined by the Bible, Fathered by God is the how-to companion, breaking down manhood into six stages to pass through. In each stage, Eldredge explores how Scripture informs the stage, what a man can expect during that time, and what pitfalls to be on the lookout for. This book promoted a great deal of reflection in me, and I appreciate its practicality and its applicability. For those like me who find Eldredge's teaching to be timely and wi ...more
Oct 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Today "Man" is being torn apart and destroyed. There are nothing but boys being raised without Fathers. Childlike temper tantrums thrown at adulthood is what we see in the streets because what it means to be a man is no longer being lifted up. This is a must read for all men throughout whatever stage of life they are in. Without question this book is a great start to bringing us men back into the right way to be.
Blake Atwood
Apr 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audiobooks
Eldredge's seven stages of manhood are an insightful and transformative way to understand yourself as a son and as a father. As I now wear both of those labels, I found this book to be restorative and challenging—a call to maturity I needed since I now bear the responsibility of guiding my little guy down the path of becoming a man who, hopefully, wants to seek God above all others. I'll be listening or reading this one again.
Feb 20, 2020 rated it liked it
A little disappointed after reading 1.5 chapters(warrior & lover) of it. Had high expectations about what this book will talk about "be a man" from a biblical perspective, but felt like it's more from personal experience & understanding. The logic connection between Bible and 'man' concept is not that persuasive to me. Didn't led buy into his idea.
But it's an inspiring book to keep me think about the "be a man" concept.
May 08, 2019 rated it liked it
This book is obviously written for men, and I knew that going in. I think that’s in part why it took me so long to read it. It gave me a new appreciation for the father I had here on earth and an appreciation for the father my kids have. More so, it gave me a deep sense of comfort from my Heavenly Father and everything he orchestrates.
Jan 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was a well written book challenging my thoughts on manhood. I do appreciate Eldredge's view points and somewhat systematic outlook on the development and evolution of a man and a father. Though I was expecting to get a book that was focused on God as our Father and how that roll plays out... it didn't touch on that topic much. So the title is misleading I would say.
Aug 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
The book helped me become more content with where I am in life. It also gave me some things to look forward to in the future. On the other side of the pages, I feel challenged and ready to continue the journey God has me on.
Nov 26, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Audiobook. Book seemed to be written with character types in mind and then combed through the Bible to find examples to fit his theory. Would prefer wisdom to be found the other way around, Bible first. Not a biblical book, but a secular book written with biblical examples.
Oscar Velasco
Feb 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
A great follow up to "Wild at Heart," Eldredge had produced an excellent resource on Biblical manhood. Worth a read for.any man trying to discover the wound and allow God to heal his hurts so he can become the king of the kingdom God desires him to inherit.
Sep 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is one of the best books I’ve ever read on manhood. Fathered by God explains what authentic manhood is, and it explains how men get to the place where they can discover or re-discover their manhood by being Fathered by God in their places of pain.
Benjamin Tdh
Mar 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
It's almost like John Introduced me to The Father again.
Well, Jesus first did. But John Eldredge introduced me to The Father through the lives and perspective of His Son Jesus. Quite a must-read for any Men wanting to know God through the lens of sage.
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John Eldredge is an author (you probably figured that out), a counselor, and teacher. He is also president of Ransomed Heart, a ministry devoted to helping people discover the heart of God, recover their own heart in his love, and learn to live in his Kingdom. John grew up in the suburbs of Los Angeles (which he hated), and spent his boyhood summers on his grandfather’s cattle ranch in eastern Ore ...more

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Science fiction and fantasy have spawned some of the most imaginative plots and settings in existence. Makes sense, given that these genres are...
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“The hardest, gladdest thing in the world is to cry Father! from a full heart . . . the refusal to look up to God as our father is the one central wrong in the whole human affair; the inability, the one central misery.” 3 likes
“This is the time for a young man to stop saying, “Why is life so hard?” He takes the hardness as the call to fight, to rise up, take it on.” 3 likes
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