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Do Hard Things: A Teenage Rebellion Against Low Expectations Hardcover – April 15, 2008


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 242 pages
  • Publisher: Multnomah Books; First Edition edition (April 15, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1601421125
  • ISBN-13: 978-1601421128
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.4 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (323 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,359 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for Do Hard Things

Do Hard Things is an extraordinary book. In fact, I believe it will prove to be one of the most life-changing, family-changing, church-changing, and culture-changing books of this generation. I'd love for every teenager to read this book, but I'm just as eager for every parent, church leader, and educator to read it.”
– Randy Alcorn, best-selling author of Heaven and The Treasure Principle

“This book is one I would recommend to any of my friends, teen or not. If it doesn't help you, you are lying.”
– Carter B., age 14, North Carolina

Do Hard Things is so important. It is challenging teenagers to rebel against the low expectations placed on them. And the voices that are asking teens to rise to meet this challenge are voices from their own generation. That thrills me.”
– Chuck Colson, best-selling author of How Now Shall We Live?

“I love the way it is written. It is crystal clear, to the point, interesting, funny, challenging, encouraging, and an easy read.”
– Lisa R., age 15, Australia

“Adult expectations for youth are too low. And these twins are out to raise them. Don't adapt to the low cultural expectations for youth. Set high ones. Youth can become examples for adults. Think that way. Dream that way. Or as the Harris brothers would say, ‘Rebel against low expectations.’”
– John Piper, best-selling author of Don’t Waste Your Life

“The message of Do Hard Things is going to awaken the dreams and passions of thousands of young people all over the world. How do I know this? This radical, yet relatively simple idea, has changed my life.”
– Erika H., age 18, Michigan

“In a culture where laziness and ease is often the order of the day for teenagers, Do Hard Things presents a radical and provocative alternative. I heartily recommend this book.”
– R. Albert Mohler, Jr., president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

“This book has totally changed the way I think. I recommend it to any and every teen who has a desire to turn their life around and make a difference.”
– Ashley W., age 13, Georgia

“Alex and Brett capture the passion and potential of our generation perfectly in this book. In Do Hard Thingsthey encourage us to go above and beyond the status quo in everything from schoolwork to serving the poor. This is a truly unique and sorely needed book.”
– Zach Hunter, author of Be the Change and Generation Change

“This book is amazing. It changes your whole way of thinking. I believe that every single teen needs to buy a copy of this book. Thanks, Alex and Brett for challenging us!”
– Stacie L., age 15, Kentucky

“This is an important book. And not just for those wanting to launch successfully into adulthood, but also for discontent twenty- and thirty-somethings who long to be catapulted into significance.”
– Ted Slater, editor of Boundless, Focus on the Family

“I'm not exactly a teenager anymore. But as I was reading I began to see how this can apply to anyone. It's never too late to start. I absolutely cannot wait to suggest this book to the 'kidults' in my life.”
– Matt R., age 26, Georgia

“Alex and Brett are the real deal and Do Hard Things is a real wake up call, not just for young people, but for all God's people. I can't recommend it highly enough.”
– Shannon Ethridge, best-selling author of the Every Woman's Battle series

“This book is a wake up call to a generation that is down in the dumps. It's like a coach screaming from the sidelines, ‘You can do it!!!’. I'd recommend it to anyone, young or old.”
– Douglas A., age 17, England

Do Hard Things is the textbook for anyone who works with teens; it’s a philosophical and foundational must-read.”
– Timothy Eldred, executive director of Christian Endeavor International

About the Author

Alex and Brett Harris founded TheRebelution.com at sixteen years old and co-authored two best-selling books by the age of twenty-one. The twins have been blessed to travel and speak in major cities around the world and have been featured nationally on ABC, CNN, MSNBC, and NPR, as well as in publications like the Wall Street Journal, Wired magazine, and The New York Times. They are sons of homeschool pioneers Gregg and Sono Harris and younger brothers of best-selling author Joshua Harris (I Kissed Dating Goodbye). Raised in Portland, Oregon, the brothers are graduates of Patrick Henry College.

More About the Author

Alex and Brett Harris founded TheRebelution.com at sixteen years old and co-authored two best-selling books by the age of twenty-one. The twins have been blessed to travel and speak in major cities around the world and have been featured nationally on ABC, CNN, MSNBC, and NPR, as well as in publications like the Wall Street Journal, Wired magazine, and The New York Times. They are sons of homeschool pioneers Gregg and Sono Harris and younger brothers of best-selling author Joshua Harris (I Kissed Dating Goodbye). Raised in Portland, Oregon, the brothers are graduates of Patrick Henry College.

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Customer Reviews

Every teen, and their parents should read this book.
mehrab
Do Hard Things, written by Alex and Brett Harris, is a Christian book regarding the teenage rebellion against low expectations.
Ryan
I'm ecstatic to say my 13 year old just finished reading this book for the first time and loved it immensely, too!
Jessica Light

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

252 of 267 people found the following review helpful By Tim Challies TOP 1000 REVIEWER on April 22, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I've often reflected on something I experienced when I was studying in college. With a busy semester ahead of me, I decided to take "Death and Dying," an elective that had the reputation of being an exceptionally easy course (a "bird course" we called it back then). On the first day we arrived in the lecture hall, the professor handed out a reading list and what he assured us were the lecture notes for the entire course. With these in hand, we were told, there was little use in showing up for the rest of the year unless we were really and truly interested in the subject matter. It was not a difficult course, he said, and we could probably do fine if we just turned in the assignments and showed up to write the exam. Needless to say, most of us took this as an opportunity to have an evening to ourselves each week rather than actually sitting through long and boring lectures on a subject that was of little interest. Also needless to say, most of us earned very poor grades. I've contrasted this in my mind to courses where the professor challenged us on the first day that his would be an exceedingly difficult course and one that would require the best we had. With such a challenge, many students rose to the challenge. Knowing that expectations were high and knowing that we faced a long and difficult fight, we reacted by putting out more effort and ultimately by doing better.

High expectations, it seems, often results in greater performance. Tragically, we live at a time where we expect very little of teenagers. The teen years, we seem to think, are a time where we can and must expect little. If our teenagers manage to avoid dangerous drugs, manage to avoid pregnancy and manage to avoid completely derailing their lives, we consider these years a success.
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75 of 83 people found the following review helpful By Cara Putman VINE VOICE on April 15, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This book is incredible. Many of us have seen teens, young adults, even thirty-somethings who are floundering through life. They can't seem to get any traction. Frankly, this approach to life drives my crazy, because I live on the other extreme. The Harris twins pinpoint the problem as a plague of low expectations when we're teenagers. As a result, we aren't trained to push ourselves and ask how God can use us -- especially during our teen years.

The verse that motivates their ministry is I Timothy 4:12. I smiled when I saw that as it was my life verse until I was 30 and decided I might need a different verse since I wasn't exactly a youth anymore. I've often wondered what my parents did or didn't do that made me believe anything I wanted to do/be was possible if it lined up with God's Word and will.

There was an expectation that everything was training. The teen years weren't a time to goof off. Instead, they were a time to prove myself and gain increasing independence as I proved myself faithful. Everything I've done, accomplished, am doing is a direct result of that philosophy.

In a sense this is exactly what Do Hard Things is about. It challenges teens to intentionally do 5 kinds of hard things:

1. Things that are outside your comfort zone.
2. Things that go beyond what is expected or required.
3. Things that are too big to accomplish alone.
4. Things that don't earn an immediate payoff.
5. Things that challenge the cultural norm.

We'd all benefit from applying those principles to our lives. But how much better if we taught them to young people. I've talked about this book since starting it. Eric is lined up to read it. I'll be giving it as graduation gifts. And it will land in my children's hands by the time they are twelve, so we can fully discuss and apply these principles in their lives.
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Gretchen on April 16, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I wish I could have read this book in high school. I think it verbalizes the cry of teen's hearts everywhere. I wanted to do more. I wanted to be more. I did what I thought I could - if only I could have realized I could do more...but it is never too late to do more and become more. And so, that is the challenge that I will take to heart from this book. Please check out this book and buy a copy for every 13-18 year old that you know...and one for yourself too!!!
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271 of 333 people found the following review helpful By Theresa Thomas on June 12, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I was ironing in the laundry room when I saw 19 year olds Alex and Brett Harris, authors of the new book "Do Hard Things" on The Harvest Show, on WHME-TV. I immediately thought of how well they carried themselves. Their enthusiasm and love of God seemed genuine and impressive. I set my iron down to carefully listen to them explain the premise of their book, and was hooked. After all, I have nine children, including four teenagers, and what they were saying to teens their age rang true--Go above and beyond. Do more than expected. Challenge yourself. Love God. Do hard things. I ordered a copy of their book the next day.

Being a bona fide book lover (and God-lover too), I couldn't help but open the book and start reading it before the mailman had even left my driveway, even though at 40-something I am far older than the intended target audience. I was immediately surprised. In the opening pages the Harris brothers describe "an imaginary abbey of Dundelhoff" ... "on the outskirts of a small town in Germany" whose monastic inhabitants "eat colorless, tasteless sludge--once a day. (and) They only drink lukewarm water". The Harris brothers criticize the imaginary monks who "believe that the more miserable they are the holier they are and the happier God is." That seemed like a slam on real monks, and was also a misrepresentation of what the monks I've read about believe. Is it coincidence that these authors chose this example for an illustration of what kind of hard things not to do, or did they know that Martin Luther, who led the protestant break from the Church, was a defected German monk? Further, framed in this way, a monks' life was presented as a folly.
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