Monday, August 12, 2013
Book Review: Raising God-First Kids In A Me-First World
When it comes to parenting our children, I think it's safe to say that there isn't a one size fits all approach to raising good kids. Oftentimes with parenting books, you get the impression that the author's take on parenting is to do it their way or your kids are doomed to turn out badly. I'm not a fan of those sorts of books. And really, that's part of why I'm not exactly into reading parenting books. That said, I was interested in reading Barbara Curtis' Raising God-First Kids in a Me-First World because the title intrigued me. As with any parenting book, I didn't know when I cracked it open whether it would be one that would resonate with me or if it would make me want to toss it aside. I'm happy to report that I found the book to be well worth my time.
Barbara's approach to parenting closely mirrors my own in many regards, particularly in limiting media exposure. I'm that parent who restricts all of the TV programming that I feel has the sole purpose of inculcating the values of consumerism and self-centered shallowness that seems to be the trend of today's me-first culture. So when I read her chapters mastering the media and consumer proofing your children, I felt that a key area of my parenting style was being affirmed. Honestly, I don't really need anyone to affirm our parenting decisions, but it is nice to read the words of a seasoned mother of 12 who has raised children to adulthood confirming that we're on the right track.
From the title of this book you might wonder if this book is going to be pushing religion down your throat at the turn of every page. The book didn't come across that way to me (I have read others that have). There is plenty of talk of how their faith has played a role in their parenting decisions and throughout the book as she relates stories from their adventures in parenting she references those instances in which they felt the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
What I appreciated most about this book is the author's acknowledgement that what worked for her family may not, in fact, work for your family or even for every child. She encourages the reader to be flexible in those situations and adapt your parenting to the individual and cautions against rigid one size fits all forms of parenting.
Overall, I found the advice in this book to be very sound. If you're not sure where to begin with regards to shifting your children from the worldly me-first mentality to a having a God-first mindset, this book would be a good jumping off point. Barbra presents her advice in a way that does not come across as preachy or judgmental. Throughout her book she gives plenty of backstory for her own journey in parenting, including her amazing conversion story.
I was provided with a review copy of this book by the publisher, Servant Books in exchange for my honest review. You can see inside this book at Amazon.