Book Review of Raising Kids in a “You Can Do It” World by Paul Tautges

This brief book is a quick but important read for busy parents.

The gospel of Jesus Christ is central to this book, emphasizing the need for parents to acknowledge that we are all sinners, the cost God paid for our salvation, and the high cost of following Him. The key is to be authentic. “Our kids…need parents who know how desperately they need the Savior themselves” (p. 39). Christian parents are warned to beware of inoculating their children with a watered-down gospel. 


How can parents help their children to think rightly about themselves? Raising Kids in a “You Can Do It” World tackles the cultural message of autonomy and independence that is drilled into our children at every turn. Author Paul Tautges, himself an experienced father of ten, clearly, concisely, and effectively answers culture’s mantra by focusing specifically on the attributes of our Creator and His gospel provision as definitive for His creatures’ view of self.


Tautges writes from a biblical conviction that the character and work of God should be at the forefront in parenting, starting with the parents’ own faith. He is concerned about the disconnection between true faith, wisdom, and dependence upon God and the self-centered values parents teach their children. He writes, “Instead of helping kids to become confident, stable, and secure – because of humble dependency upon God and His wisdom – [children are told] they are independent, self-sufficient, self-directed, and self-governing…. [But] messages like these feed the inborn, natural elevation of self. Awareness of this cultural tension highlights how much we need to approach Christian parenting as intentional discipleship” (pp. 5-6).

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