July 23, 2008

Do Hard Things

I've just finished reading the book "Do Hard Things" by Alex & Brett Harris. And I can't recommend it enough! If you are a pastor, youth pastor, teenager, parent of a teenager or one soon to be, GET THIS BOOK! And don't just take my word for it! This book is endorsed by John Piper, Al Mohler, Mark Dever, C.J. Mahaney, Chuck Colson, Randy Alcorn, Ron Luce, Ted Slater and many others. It's written by the twin brothers of Josh Harris, pastor and author of "I Kissed Dating Goodbye" and "Stop Dating the Church."

The book is subtitled "
A Teenage Rebellion Against Low Expectations" and is designed to get teenagers dreaming, planning, and then doing great things for God. They start the book off by addressing the myth of adolescence. At one point in time, those just entering into puberty were starting to be considered as adults. Women could get married shortly thereafter and men were eligible for service in the armed forces. Around this time some would even head off to colleges or universities. All of this was designed to groom what we call teenagers (a term they say did not enter the English language until 1948) for adulthood. It got them to thinking, planning and acting like adults. But in today's society, teenagers are often considered to be the riff-raff of society who have nothing better to do than hang out, avoid responsibility and get into trouble. The result is that society expects nothing more of them and this destroys the formative years when what they will be as adults is largely cast in stone.

The authors tell of the events that started their own impetus to do hard things (which they have called The Rebelution), how it turned into a web site, a nationwide phenomenon and now a book deal. They lay out a plan for what teenagers need to be doing to think ahead in life, to dream big about serving God and then laying the foundation for doing things that they never thought possible. And it's all done to satisfy God's will in their lives which glorifies Him as well. They also tell the stories of several teenagers who have done absolutely incredible things (like speaking to crowds of thousands and raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for missions projects, etc.). They are doing things that they would have never thought possible thanks to the prompting and guidance of Alex and Brett.

It truly is inspiring to read, even as an adult. I can't imagine what it would do to teenagers who are just beginning to think ahead and decide what they are going to do and where they are going to go. I wish I would have had this book many years ago. But even as an adult, it's never too late to do hard things for God!

Their web site is also an online community designed to share these success stories and provide forums for people to link up, help each other, encourage each other and continue to create and do hard things.

The book even contains an Appendix which gives the Gospel message although I must say they are a little vague on some of the details (which is surprising since they were inspired by Mark Dever). But they do finish up the book fabulously by ending their acknowledgements with this:

To our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. This book is for You and only because of You. Time and time again we have watched You orchestrate events in ways beyond what we could have ever imagined. We deserve Your wrath -- and yet You freely give us grace. Soli Deo Gloria!


And don't be worried about readability. It's written by teenagers for teenagers. It is entertaining, inspiring and to read some of these stories, it is just incredible to see what God is doing today in the lives of some brave teenagers who have caught the spirit of this movement and stepped forward to serve God and do hard things!

For a professional take, check out Tim Challies' review over at The Discerning Read web site.
They've also recently appeared on Way of the Master Radio (MP3 - jump to 8:00 minutes) and CNN (just to name a few).


gypsy@Hebrews11:13 said...

Oooo...put that on my "to read" shelf, please!

Richpo the Unmagnificent said...

Sorry, but Mr. Pabody has dibs. Pastor Mike said he was buying a copy so maybe he'll let you borrow his ;-)

Kim said...

My 13 year old just finished this book and loved it! I checked it out from the library and I plan on reading it this week :)