I love this book.  I have walked through more than a decade with a serious prodigal and have spent years praying for and ministering to families with prodigals.  Carol has put it all together so well.  Her analysis is insightful, her grasp of reality is true, her suggestions are so practical.  The book is filled with love and truth, with help and hope and humor, and with the grace that makes redemption and restoration possible.

-Judy Douglass, author, speaker, Campus Crusade for Christ, Founder- Prayer for Prodigals


In our professional capacity, we speak with hundreds of homeschooling parents every year. We know that many of these parents realize the hope that their children will grow up with a vibrant and active faith avoiding the heartache that comes with rebellion.  We also serve those who have one or more rebellious prodigal children and have seen the havoc this can bring to a family. Carol Barnier was a prodigal herself and has written Engaging Today's Prodigal providing hopeful insight and practical direction for all parents who may be struggling with the trauma and guilt that comes with having a prodigal in the family.  If you have a prodigal in your family or want to be prepared just in case-please read this book.

-J. Michael Smith, President of HSLDA and Michael P. Donnelly, HSLDA Staff Attorney


Engaging Today's Prodigal gives needed insight into the heart of a prodigal child  and rest for a worried, weary and grieving parent's heart.

In this inspiring little volume Carol's story provides encouragement and hope along with practical suggestions to help in dealing with difficult prodigal relationships. 

Carol also lends poignant suggestions for how the church can better equip our children to face the world's onslaught on a young believer's faith, thus preparing them to face the world with confidence. 

-Liz Cowen Furman, Speaker, Author, Artist & Mother of Three Teen Boys


Insightful and gentle, Engaging Today’s Prodigal is written by a former prodigal for those who love the prodigal in their lives. Devoted parents frequently carry deep blame for the choices their grown children make. With grace, Carol Barnier dismantles the myths surrounding prodigals and why they chose their path. Then she dishes up an extra-large scoop of hope.

-PeggySue Wells, author of What To Do When You Don't Want To Go To Church and Rediscovering Your Happily Ever After.


Engaging Today's Prodigal offers hope and healing for parents doubly wounded first by the pain of a child who has walked away from their love and then by the pain incurred by the condemnation of others around them.  Barnier writes in the frank, even humorous, style of a person who herself hiked the road of the prodigal.  Drawing upon her own trek through atheism, Barnier suggests practical steps to help parents survive the waiting period and offers clear guidelines for restoring family relationships after a child returns.

-Emily Parke Chase, author of Help! My Family's Messed Up!


Perhaps the most startling concept in Engaging Today’s Prodigal is that parents of prodigals are often so focused on the wrong choices their children make that they fail to grasp some powerful, positive choices they can make themselves. Carol smashes myths about reaching prodigals while building a relationship framework that invites change.

-Dawn Wilson - Founder of Heart Choices Ministries and the president of the Network of Evangelical Women in Ministry (NEWIM), San Diego chapter.


I've met so many heartbroken parents of prodigals who had nowhere to turn. The prevalence of false promises, misunderstood Biblical references, and guaranteed techniques to raising perfect children has been well-intentioned, but ultimately harmful. Parents have long needed a place to turn, and Carol Barnier has provided it in this book. I sincerely hope this book will find its way to families who need it, but even more that it will re-shape communities captive to bad ideas about prodigals and their families to become havens of help instead of harm. This book is a roadmap for parents and churches, and needs to be widely read.

-John Stonestreet - Speaker and Author for Breakpoint and Summit Ministries