It’s tough being a Christian teen. Sometimes it takes a lot of courage to stand apart, say no and become a leader who isn’t afraid to step out and fight for what is right in a world full of wrong.
I was recently given the opportunity to review the book Courageous Teens that addresses a variety of issues centered on that fact that today’s Christian teens need a good dose of courage to live for God and reach their potential. The author writes in the introduction, “I hope and pray this book will find its way into the hands of young people who will say, “By the grace of God, I will make a difference with my life. I will count the cost, pay the price, stand in the gap, and confront the culture.”
We are a Christian family and I’m always on the look-out for great books to share with Otter during our daily morning Bible study and discussion time. Courageous Teens is definitely a keeper as it’s filled with inspiring and timely messages for my son.
Courageous Teens was written by Michael Catt, the executive producer of Fireproof, Facing the Giants and Courageous. This particular book has quotes and examples from the movie Courageous, but it’s not necessary to have seen the movie to “get” the book (neither of us have seen any of the above). It takes a look at people in the Bible who’ve had to face a variety of challenges and uses plenty of examples from our modern world to reach teens and teach them Biblical principles with plenty of practical applications. Some of the important topics covered are:
- Moving beyond your comfort zone and taking the first steps toward wherever God may be calling you in your life & future.
“Believing in God means standing up and facing an impossible challenge without fear of what might happen when we obey God’s will.”
- Learning how to be a leader – why we need Christian young people as leaders, how to become one.
“Do your friends know who you serve? Do they know what principles you stand for? Do they know what gives you courage? In order for you to lead, your friends, your family, your youth group will need to know where you are going. They’ll need to know what they’re fighting for. They’ll need to know why it’s worth it.”
- God can make a hero out of you, even when you are facing overwhelming odds
- Making up your mind to live a life of obedience – doing what is right, no matter what
- Learning how to choose and refuse –
“Don’t be afraid to take a stand against the popular. You are accountable for your life and the lives you touch. …Don’t let culture suck you down the sewer.“
- How to handle persecution & criticism
- Making a difference in people’s lives and not being content with just being average
I really like the book and think it makes a great read-aloud. I’ve read other reviews where moms complained the book bored their teens because they had a hard time getting through long examples or sections (such as a quote from Joshua 7:1-20 that takes up *gasp* 2 pages) and because the pages weren’t “flashy” and visual enough to keep their attention. If your teen must be entertained by side-bars and pictures, s/he may not enjoy Courageous Teens because it’s laid out like an “old-fashioned” book that is mostly just text (and doesn’t cater to the iPod & video game need to be entertained every 2 seconds mentality). We don’t have that problem here though. Otter is more interested in the message of a book than the delivery. For those of you who might run into that issue, I recommend another book called Amusing Ourselves to Death. Having said all of that, there are a few areas where your teen can write the answers to recap questions directly in the book, but they are not flashy or “decorated”.
If you’re a Christian family looking for an inspiring and encouraging book for your teen, this one shines with plenty of real-life examples to help your son or daughter make some courageous decisions. You can purchase it from Amazon and it’s also available for the Kindle for 2 bucks cheaper!
***Note: I received a free copy of Courageous Teens from Handlebar Central in exchange for my honest review.***
Want to read more of my book reviews (for adults, teens and children)? Click here!