Friday, April 25, 2008

A Must Read

I read a book last night that every teenager and parent of a teenager should immediately stop what they are doing and read!

It is titled: Do Hard Things -- A Teenage Rebellion Against Low Expectations, written by Alex & Brett Harris, two teenagers, who are the younger brothers of Joshua Harris who has written a number of popular books the most well known being, "I Kissed Dating Goodbye".

In their book, Alex & Brett tell the story of some of the things they have been challenged to do as teenagers and some of the success they have experienced. They also do a great job of showing the biblical view of adolescence, which is something every preacher and teacher of God's Word should know and understand.

The highlight of the book is their explanation of how the expectations for teens have changed over the last 200 years and what the result of that has been. What it means to be a responsible sixteen year old today is vastly different from what it meant to be a responsible sixteen year old 200 years ago. For all of the advancements of culture and science, teenagers have gone steadily backwards now for generations. Whose fault is this?

The teenage authors put the blame for this regression squarely on the teenagers, and it would be difficult to disagree with anything they say. But as a parent of a soon-to-be-teen, this book opened my eyes to the responsibility that parents (and church youth workers) have to foster this responsibility in the hearts and minds of teens. My children will likely rise to my level of expectations. If I have a modern view of adolescence and normal 21st century American expectations for my children, I will be doing them a great disservice. I need to understand what the Bible teaches about the purpose of the 'teen years' and I need to adjust my expectations of my girls accordingly. That is what they need from their mom and dad!

Who should read this book?

If you are a parent and have a son or daughter between the ages of 11 and 18, you should read this book TODAY. I could not more strongly recommend a book to parents of teenagers.

Teens should read this book too. In fact, it is not written to or for parents. It is written to and for teenagers. Every teen should read this book this week.

(I know what you are thinking right now... "Fat chance a teen is going to pick up a 200+ page book called "Do Hard Things" that isn't required reading for school and sit down and really read it." I am tempted to think the same thing. Our tendency to think like this is a sign of how badly we need to know what this book teaches. Shame on us that we don't have higher expectations of the teens we know.)

Pastor Noel


I purchased my book through The book can also be purchased directly from the authors at I imagine you could also pick it up in any Christian bookstore.