Directed to parents and gatekeepers of today’s youth, renowned speaker and author Josh McDowell focuses on the how-to’s of teaching teens and pre-teens to make right moral choices.
Set Free to Choose Right will help you come to understand:
- why today’s kids feel they have the right to determine what is “right” or “wrong” for themselves
- how culture reinforces that there are no universal truths and. . .
- where this misconception historically originated
- how to motivate kids to make good choices
- it is God’s character and nature that makes right, right and wrong, wrong
Engaging stories and helpful illustration are provided to model how a person (of any age) can distinguish between right and wrong and make the right choice—every time!
|Publisher:||Barbour Publishing, Incorporated|
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About the Author
Read an Excerpt
What Were You Thinking?
It was a little past 10:30 p.m. when Aubrey Jefferies slipped quietly into her home. The PTA board meeting had droned on much longer than she anticipated, and she hoped her husband, Brad, had not waited up for her. The lights were turned off, so she assumed that he and their two teenage children were already in bed. Guided by hallway nightlights, she tiptoed up the stairway and down the hall, hoping she could slip into bed without awakening her husband.
As she made her way past the bedroom of Jayden, their fourteen-year-old son, she thought she heard a muffled sound coming from under the closed door. She stopped to listen. It sounded like the voice of a woman. Aubrey slowly turned the doorknob and peered into the room. Jayden was sitting at his desk with his back to her, staring intently at his computer. Displayed on the screen was a provocative young woman, completely naked, speaking to the viewer in seductive tones.
"Jayden! What are you doing?" Aubrey blurted as she stepped into the room.
The startled boy slammed his computer shut and turned wide-eyed toward his mother. "I–I was just ... It–it's not what you think, Mom," Jayden stammered.
"Don't lie to me, young man," Aubrey retorted as she flipped on his bedroom light. "I saw what you were doing." She stepped back into the hallway. "Bradley," she called, "come to Jayden's room — right now!"
In a matter of seconds, Brad was in the room facing his wife, her voice approaching a shriek, and her finger jabbing the air toward their son as she explained how she had caught him viewing internet porn.
"Dad, it wasn't like that," Jayden protested. "I was just doing some school research, and I just happened to ..."
"You were researching naked girls for school?" his mother interrupted. "I don't think so!"
"Okay, okay, let's chill a little." Brad motioned with his hand for Aubrey to calm down.
"Jayden, are you saying you weren't on a porn site?"
"Yeah, no — I mean, I was just — uh — doing some research for my homework, and I came across this site and didn't really know what it was until I ..."
"So you admit it, you were on a porn site!" Aubrey interrupted.
"Okay, okay!" Jayden countered. "I may have ended up on a site like that, but it's not that big a deal. Come on, Dad, you know how it is."
"Bradley!" Aubrey looked straight at her husband. "What does he mean, 'you know how it is'?"
Brad hesitated, took a deep breath, motioned for his wife to back off, and spoke directly to his son. "You and I have talked about the dangers of porn sites before, Jayden. There's a lot of bad stuff out there." Jayden, feeling like a cornered animal, stared at his feet. "Look at me, son," Brad said in a soft tone. "Have you been getting into this stuff?"
"No," Jayden protested.
"Let me see your computer." Brad reached out for his son's laptop. The boy reluctantly handed it over.
Brad quickly checked the computer history. He slowly shook his head as he looked at his wife and then back to his son.
"You're lying, son. You've been doing this a lot." Brad's voice clearly conveyed his disappointment. "Whose credit card have you been using?"
"Credit card?" Aubrey responded. "You mean you've been paying for this slutty stuff!"
"Come on. Whose card, Jayden?" his dad insisted.
Jayden stared at the floor and in a low voice said, "Mom's."
"You've been using my card to visit porn sites?" Aubrey's voice rose with each word. "Shame on you, Jayden Allen!"
Brad shook his head slowly. "What were you thinking, Jayden? You know this isn't right. We've taught you better than this."
"Okay, okay!" A touch of belligerence edged Jayden's voice. "I'll pay you back for the credit card charges, but I don't see why you're making this into such a big deal. Everybody does it, and I'm not hurting anyone."
What Makes Right Choices Difficult
Like Brad and Aubrey in the above story, we all want our kids to resist temptation and make right choices. We try to give our kids wise counsel, teach them what is morally right and wrong, and hope they follow through and do the right thing. Yet it has become increasingly more difficult to lead our kids to make right choices. It's not that parents, grandparents, pastors, youth workers, and Christian educators aren't desperately trying. Today more than ever, gatekeepers of youth are running scared that our increasingly ungodly culture is drawing our kids away from biblical moral truth.
No doubt you have felt that fear. There is no denying that we face an uphill battle, but it is a battle that we can definitely win. In spite of formidable competition from our pervasive culture, it is still possible to instill biblical morality within your kids that will govern their choices. But to do so we must come to grips with at least three critical issues. To empower our kids to discern right from wrong, we need to squarely address a cultural issue, a child development issue, and a parental methodology issue. Confronting and understanding these issues will lay the solid foundation from which we can set our kids free to choose right.
1. A Cultural Issue
In our story, Jayden's parents considered viewing internet pornography to be morally wrong. But Jayden excused his behavior because to him it was no big deal. His perspective on the issue was that he had the right to judge for himself whether internet porn was wrong for him. He did not see it as that bad because, as he said, "I'm not hurting anyone." He saw it as a private issue that did no harm to either him or to anyone else. So why should it be considered wrong?
Jayden's view is representative of an entire generation of young people who believe that right and wrong are determined by the individual and not by any absolute standard. Many believe they have the right to decide for themselves what is right and to act accordingly. The belief that one can choose his own morality without suffering consequences or hurting anyone is erroneous, as we shall soon see.
Scripture warns us over and over of the consequences of becoming our own arbitrators of truth. This view that truth is relative and individually determined arose in the Garden of Eden and caused the downfall of our primeval parents. It was the prevalent cause of Israel's seesaw history and ultimate collapse. The entire book of Judges provides us with a quintessential example of what happens when a society determines its own morality. It chronicles the devastating results of moral relativism upon a nation. When the people of Israel judged for themselves what was right and wrong, they began to experience severe social dysfunction. Families suffered moral breakdown. Civility was soon abandoned. Theft, violence, and lawlessness became pervasive. The last verse of the final chapter of Judges sums up the cause of the whole problem: "In those days Israel had no King; all the people did whatever seemed right in their own eyes" (Judges 21:25). In other words, moral relativism became the rule of the day, and the cohesiveness of the nation fragmented into rampant individualism.
It is moral relativism that sets the human conscience adrift. It allows the heart and mind to excuse attitudes and behavior that are wrong and harmful to oneself and others. Young Jayden gives us a typical example. In his mind, viewing internet pornography is no big deal. He has formed his own, privately held moral principle that removes pornography from the sin list. He is like 68 percent of teens and young adults in America who don't believe viewing pornographic images is wrong for them.
And it's not just our teens. Think of the people you work with and the neighborhood in which you live. Do these people believe there's a universal moral code to follow, or do they think right and wrong are relative — to be determined by the individual?
While studies show that 80 percent of Americans express concern about the nation's moral condition, 57 percent of your neighbors and coworkers believe truth is relative and that right and wrong are subjectively determined by the individual. And if your neighbors are Millennials (those born between 1984 and 2002), 74 percent of them believe morality is "whatever seems right in their own eyes." These polls express a strange paradox: while Americans are acutely aware that the morality of the nation is declining, they are oblivious to the fact that the slide is caused by their own moral relativism. As a famous cartoon character of the past used to say, "We have met the enemy and he is us."
Among the most alarming factors that play into this issue are the schoolteachers that have authority over your children for six or more hours every day. Do these adults believe there is a truth that is right for everyone or that truth is situational and whatever works for the individual is what is right for that person? It pains me to say that the vast majority of our nation's teachers have been indoctrinated in moral relativism throughout their college years. Duke Pesta, professor at the University of Wisconsin — Oshkosh, makes this astute observation about today's relativistic educational system:
It starts at the top, in the journal articles and published books that secure tenure and impose the ideological dictates determining the construction of curricula and the way we train teachers from kindergarten through high school and beyond. At the highest levels of academia, the tenured professoriate — and the professors, deans, provosts, chancellors, and university presidents who almost always arise from the privileged ranks of this tenured class — there exists a dangerously monolithic echo chamber, where relativistic, post-modern ideas about the world, culture, and truth have become calcified. The consequences to education of this ideological conformity can be witnessed at every level of public, and in many cases private, instruction, for many private schools only hire teachers trained and certified by state-run education programs.
Consequently, from the start most teachers view all learning through the lens of moral relativism. Count on it, if your child is in public school, and perhaps even in some private/Christian schools, he or she is being influenced to believe that right and wrong are to be subjectively determined.
Twenty-five years ago, a major TV network news anchor reported that a significant number of students cheated on their tests and that professors knew that cheating was widespread. This finding was alarming enough, but something even more appalling within that report really caught my attention. The news anchor went on to explain that the majority of the students that cheated did not believe there was anything wrong with it.
That news report, in part, led us to commission a study on morality among teenagers within Christian families and solid Christian churches. Subsequently, we wrote a book that included a full analysis of that study. That book — Right from Wrong: What You Need to Know to Help Youth Make Right Choices — is still in print after two decades, and the book you are now reading is a companion to it. (See epilogue for more information on that book.) Back then, 71 percent of kids from Christian homes believed that moral truth was subjective and individually determined. And the percentage holding that viewpoint has remained constant over the past twenty-five years.
In the pages that follow, we will demonstrate how this relativistic view shows up in your child's world, where it comes from, and how to counter it effectively. Helping your young people redefine the culture's view of truth, especially in the area of sexuality, is a critical step in the process of helping your kids learn to make right moral choices.
In today's highly sexualized and hedonistic culture, much of our moral concerns for our kids do center on sexuality. Almost every facet of society pushes our young people toward sexual immorality. God's way, as we know, leads us in the opposite direction. Paul puts it this way: "We must not engage in sexual immorality" (1 Corinthians 10:8). So leading our kids to make the right moral choices sexually should take high priority in today's cultural climate — not only because it is biblical, but for another reason as well. Lead your kids to make right choices regarding sexuality, and the other guidelines and commands of God will tend to fall in place. Why? Because living pure and faithful sexually encompasses so many other important values in life, including honesty, self-control, respect, love, loyalty, responsibility, trustworthiness, integrity, patience, honor, unity, and intimacy.
Our sexuality touches on much of who we are and how we relate to one another. Help your young people make the right sexual choices, and they will also learn much about what it takes to form and maintain healthy relationships. So our running story at the beginning of each chapter will largely be dealing with choices relating to a young person's sexuality.
2. A Child Development Issue
In our story, Jayden paid for his visits to internet porn sites with his mother's credit card. How could he think he wasn't going to get caught? Didn't he know that the charges would show up on Aubrey's credit card bill? Did he think she wouldn't notice? It's no wonder Brad asked his son, "What were you thinking?"
The answer is that Jayden was not thinking rationally at all. He was not connecting the dots into a composite picture of his actions and their consequences. In fact, he, like virtually all teenagers, is developmentally incapable of making consistent sound, rational thoughts and decisions. Why? Because the decision-making part of the adolescent brain is not yet fully developed. Twenty-five years ago, neuroscientists believed the adolescent brain was as fully matured physically as the adult brain. But through "brain mapping," medical scientists have found that the decision-making part of the brain — the prefrontal cortex — isn't fully developed until a person reaches his or her twenties.
To complicate matters, the limbic system of the adolescent brain, where raw emotions are generated, is in a stage of high-powered rapid development. Dr. Robert Sapolsky, professor of biology, neurology, and neurosurgery at Stanford University, puts it this way: "In an adult, the frontal cortex steadies the activity of parts of the limbic system, a brain region involved in emotion; in contrast, in the teenage brain, the limbic system is already going at full speed, while the frontal cortex is still trying to make sense of the assembly instructions."
What this means is that teenagers' emotions are developing far ahead of their rational thinking. This occurs because the prefrontal cortex in teenagers is not fully mature, and it limits to some degree their ability to make consistent sound decisions, especially under the pressure of volatile emotions. The more-developed, highly active limbic system is like a busy highway crowded with speeding cars. The less-developed frontal cortex is like a traffic signal that doesn't always work correctly. Sometimes it flashes from green to red without hitting yellow. Sometimes it is green in all directions at the same time, prompting emotional pandemonium. Researchers suspect that this imbalance between the two systems keeps teenagers from tracking multiple concepts and inhibits them from gaining instant access to critical memories and thoughts that are necessary components in making consistent sound judgments or controlling unruly emotions.
Imagine your teenagers with a limbic system running at freeway speed, primed to react instantly to anything that might endanger their turf, such as a disagreement with you over fashion, friends, music, or even the viewing of internet porn. With their prefrontal cortex on emotional overload, teenagers don't always have the brainpower to organize their thoughts and make sound decisions. This biological reality has been recognized by the US federal government and has been instrumental in shaping laws to protect adolescents, primarily because they have not fully gained a developmental sense of decision making. In 2005, the US Supreme Court ruled that the death penalty is unconstitutional for juveniles, stating that "parts of the brain involved in behavior control continues to mature through late adolescence."
This isn't to say that teenagers are devoid of a conscience or shouldn't somehow be held accountable for their actions. But it does explain why our kids are prone to wrong choices that seem to make sense to them at the moment. The good news is there are powerful steps you can take to offset the underdeveloped reasoning center of your child's brain. You can help your kids to better navigate through the teen years and still make wise choices — and we will explain how in the later chapters.
3. A Parental Methodology Issue
The information you provide your kids, the guidance you give, and what you say to them are all important. But just as important, or even more so, is how you convey this information. How you relate to your child personally is critical. I have often said, "Your kids won't care how much you know until they know how much you care."
Excerpted from "Set Free to Choose Right"
Copyright © 2018 Josh McDowell Ministry.
Excerpted by permission of Barbour Publishing, Inc.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1 What Were You Thinking? 9
Chapter 2 Who's to Say Who's Right? 23
Chapter 3 Right for a Reason 43
Chapter 4 Rules for a Reason 59
Chapter 5 The Empowering Nature of Grace 75
Chapter 6 Being Models of Right and Wrong Choices 95
Chapter 7 Consider the Choice 113
Chapter 8 Compare It to God 127
Chapter 9 Commit to God's Ways 139
Chapter 10 Count on God's Provision and Protection 153
Epilogue: Resources That Can Help 167
Exhibit: The Porn Phenomenon 171
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
"Set Free to Choose Right....Equipping Today's Kids to Make Right Moral Choices for Life by author Josh McDowell is a 208 page paperback book for parents, youth ministers, and basically anyone involved in guiding children's lives. It is geared toward preteens and teenage years. Those seem to be the years when kids pull for more free to make their own decisions. Unfortunately those decisions oftentimes are not the best ones. The author has divided his book into ten chapters followed by an Epilogue, Exhibit, and concluded with Endnotes. Written in much the same style as some of his other books, author McDowell basically has a discussion with readers. He shows research to back up his ideas and thoughts. This is a well thought, researched, helpful book written in a way anyone will understand. In "Set Free to Choose Right" the relevant, timely moral topic of pornography is tackled. There are discussions, examples, and scriptures to reference for each principle. The more I read, the more I wanted to read. Author McDowell is so experienced in helping kids and his heart for doing that comes through his words. Readers will learn how to listen and respond correctly. How to give teens the tools they need to make the correct moral choices. In a world filled with peer pressure and and trying to keep God out, this book is a valuable asset not only to guide teens but all of us. The bottom line is there is right and wrong. We must teach our kids the difference and how to want to choose right instead of wrong. As a grandmother of four, two of them preteens, I am thankful for this book. I gladly recommend this and give it a 5 out of 5 star rating. Anyone working with kids' ministry or having a teenager in the family will glean valuable insight from this book. It would be a nice church library addition or gift
I needed the message of this book right when I was reading it. My oldest child is almost 13 and we are entering a time of questioning everything. I appreciate that this book discusses the moral relativism so prevalent in our culture and gets to the heart of the matter. While I underlined and took to heart many sections of the book, the concept of relating why we do or do not do something to the person of God impacted me the most. The author’s discussion of relating the law to Precept, Principle, and Person of God are exactly what we as Christian parents and leaders should be doing with our preteen, teenagers, young adults, and beyond. I cannot recommend this book enough. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.
Much needed book for parents. I was hooked from the beginning and knew I had to read the rest as quick as possible. McDowell tells it like it is. Everything is backed by scripture and is based on what the Bible says is true and not what society dictates. It doesn’t just put bandages on things it digs down deep to fix roots which allows for lasting change. This is a book you want to read slowly, allowing your mind and heart to fully grasp what is being said so you can put it into action. Every parent needs to read this. It is Convicting but also encouraging. I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion. I was in no way required to write a review, positive or negative.
This is a book that every parent should read. Whether savvy with technology or a novice, this book is an eye opener of why parents should stay involved with their children, why they need guidance and direction and is a way to open up the lines of communication between parents and children. I received this book for free from the publisher and was not under obligation to write a review. All opinions are my own.
Right off the top, please note that although the title doesn’t indicate it, this book deals primarily with the topic of pornography and youth. Given our culture, and ability to access anything on the internet, author Josh McDowell does a great job of giving us statistics and stories, as well as solid advice when dealing with porn. He goes beyond that and gives us tools, as well as scripture verses to go along with those tools. McDowell, as always, does a fantastic job of making this subject relevant to today. He knows how to reach our youth with God’s Word and shows us how to also. I highly recommend this as reading material for anyone who has a child in their lives. I received a complimentary copy of this book but was not required to leave a review.
SET FREE TO CHOOSE RIGHT by Josh McDowell is not only written for today's kids, but for adults that are looking for life choices. The social media tempts us all, young and old in so many ways; especially the kids of today, and the high technology leads to so many distractions in today's world, which makes it hard to keep someone's attention, especially the young. With all of the games they have to choose from and so many cell phones to keep them busy, they don't seem to have the time or want to take the time to think about what could be a right or wrong decision to make. Take for instance the story where Jayden's parents were trying to talk to him about right and wrong choices and the answer Jayden gave them. Then, a little farther into the book, the problem took a deeper root as the conversation developed. Some of today's younger generation seem to go against their parents, or what the Bible says about right and wrong, because some think or have their own opinion about what the Bible says, whether it's right or wrong, some think that to them it isn't wrong. But, are they right in their thinking? Are they commenting sin because of going against what the Bible says about sin? How do the young generation of today know they aren't hurting anyone by what they believe or in their thinking? Is the young generation of today, because of their beliefs, disobeying their parents? Everybody has an opinion, but if that opinion goes against God's word, isn't it wrong? As the conversation deepens between Jayden and his dad, which one will be convinced the most, or give in? Which one is right? Will Jayden see the point his dad is trying to make? Does lack of communication enlarge the problem between dad and son? Very good conversation piece! I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review. As parents & grandparents we have been given the great responsibility of molding & shaping the lives of our children & grandchildren. We have been charged with raising up Godly children. Teaching them good morals & values, right from wrong, & instilling the Word of God in their hearts. We must teach them to always do the right thing, to have great character, how to make Godly choices, & to always stand for truth even if they have to stand alone. "Set Free To Choose Right", is a great tool to help you to open dialogue & talk to your children. This book is a great read & will help you to teach your children to be a bright, Godly light in a world that is sometimes dark & often times seems to have lost it's way.
Wow! First off, every parent should read this book! It is so eye opening in many ways. As one reviewer said, it does include statistics about porn and the struggle some people have with it, but DO NOT let that discourage you from picking this book up! I know as a parent, porn and pre-marital sex is a real fear I have that my children will fall prey to in the future. But that is not all this book is about. It is about forming the foundation in your child's mind to let THEM realize the true right from wrong by God's standards and helps them implement that in all moral decisions. This book starts out recognizing that in this world, morality is very much subjective in society as a whole. It isn't a good thing, but that is what it has come to. Based on that thought, I was absolutely brought in by this quote from the book "...we have the freedom to choose whether to follow right or wrong, but we do not have the freedom to choose the CONTENT of right and wrong. And choosing wrong, even if we convince ourselves it is right, does not exempt us from the inevitable consequences of our choice." Another enlightening thought is that absolutely everyone's opinion on moral issues IS subjective! That isn't a pretty thought, is it? It goes beyond the Bible for answers, which is the typical answer people might give when asked why they feel a certain way morally. Who was the Bible written by? People. People are fallible and are subjective. To get to the real truth, you must go to the base of all people and sources, God. We need to have Him as our example and moral compass. God is a God of love, therefore love is good and hate is evil. God is true, therefore honesty is good and lies or deceit is evil. God is pure and faithful, therefore chastity is good and promiscuity is evil. This book does a great job going through many eye-opening details and also includes how to alter your parenting style to include these discussions and teachings in it. I highly recommend reading it! I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.
Great Book to Help Parents for Equipping Today’s Kids to Make Right Moral Choices Set Free to Choose Right by Josh McDowell is an exceptional book and can be used as a much needed help in shaping the lives of teens in our families and in our churches. The book basically deals with porn which as this book reveals is much more prevalent in our teen’s lives than we want to admit. But it is not JUST about porn, it is a guide to help our young ones understand that the goal is not following rules. But to quote McDowell, “God’s commands are like those of a loving parent……meant to protect us. He gave commands……because He loves us and wants to protect us and provide for us. God’s rules for moral behavior are motivated by love and given for our benefit. That is what we must impress upon our young people. There is much more to the book than I am covering in this review. He discusses the 4 C’s Process. Consider the choice; Compare it to God; Commit to God’s way; and Count on God’s protection and provision. You will have to read the book to get the depth of what he presents. I recommend it to anyone who has influence with children whether it is parents, grandparents, other family members and church leaders. It is time we prepare ourselves to guide and lead instead of just looking for an answer when a problem hits. I highly recommend this book. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.
Helping kids make right moral choices in today’s world. This book is written for parents and anyone who impacts the life of our pre-teens and teens. I recommend you read it BEFORE your child reaches this stage so you will be ready. Set Free to Choose Right helps adults guide children to learn the difference between right and wrong in so many teen issues and make the right choices. Each of the 10 chapters begins with a story in the life of Aubrey, Brad, and their son Jayden. Then Josh McDowell follows up with research, scripture and suggestions as to how the situation could have been handled. There is a heavy emphasis on sexual sin, but along with this emphasis is realizing the difference between what the world says is ok compared to what God says is ok. I recommend this book to anyone who has anything to do with pre-teens and teens. After reading this book you will know more of the signs to look for regarding issues in their life as well as ways to handle various situations. This is a book you will want to keep on your bookshelf so you can refer to it again and again. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.
In his book, Josh McDowell shares many principles to help guide parents in helping their children to choose right based on God’s truth and His character. He shares that it is important to guide your children through life with love and grace, re-enforcing who God is. I love the Scripture that is included to help encourage us as we raise our children and teenagers so they can learn to make right choices. It is wonderful that this book applies to adults as well, learning these same truths to help us make the right choices also. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.
Well written. I admire Josh McDowell's writing. He has a way of getting his point across in a very useful and easy to understand way. This book deals with the dangers of our children in this morally corrupt world. We, as parents, need to equip ourselves with the weapons at hand, to help our children to make the right choices. What the world calls acceptable isn't always right....hardly ever right. Any parent of teenagers, especially those in public school, need to read this book and get informed about how to handle certain situations that arise.....those situations that try to corrupt our children. BEFORE IT'S TOO LATE. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.
Another Quality Teaching Tool on Truth Josh McDowell has been impacting lives with the reality of truth for over five decades. Once again, he uses research and captivating writing to bring thought-provoking principles front and center. This book is primarily a discussion on moral choices, and the challenges teens face in today’s culture. Centered around the topic of pornography, Josh explains the battle and the steps to understanding victory. As a parent of six children who are now adult, I can relate to his examples, testimonies, and principles to explain and teach moral thinking. Actions always impact. A parent will learn in the first chapter about the Child Development Issues that explain emotionally charged decisions that are made without common or moral sense. As a result, a parent can see fairly clearly why teens make some of the decisions they make and how it can adversely impact them and others. As the book continues with story-oriented dialogue, you have an opportunity to relate to what is happening in the world of teens, and how parents can respond. Josh McDowell has always been one to share from his own experience, and he continues this method here. I found his responses to wrong choices understandable because he made sure you were able to learn the principle and then the action for the teen to make. Reading this, reminded me of many of the same moments that we had as parents, and I concur with him, that while it is not easy, understanding the goal for teens as they move toward adulthood gives a foundation for how to respond; this in and of itself is encouraging. With new scientific and psychological information combined with age-old biblical truths, there is hope for our teens. I highly recommend this book for understanding this particular season of parenting or relationship building. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review, however, as always with a book like this, if I can encourage another parent on this journey with a review, then I do so willingly.
This book is a compelling look at the "pornography epidemic" that has invaded our culture. Respected author Josh McDowell has shared conclusive evidence from a 2016 study by the Barna Group to show that children as young as eight years old have been exposed to pornography through social media and that 63% of teenagers actively choose to view it! Equally disturbing are the facts that many youth ministers and senior ministers have admitted to this practice, as well as parents! Pornography is recognized as an addiction and we must work to prevent it! Set Free To Choose Right allows us to see a "typical mother and father" who discover that their fourteen year old son is viewing adult web sites on his computer. Through conversation, different scenarios and suggested Bible scripture the author shows how this family can best deal with this situation. As the grandmother of a four year old granddaughter I find McDowell's evidence to be extremely frightening and I appreciate the advice he has offered in Set Free To Choose Right: Equipping Today's Kids To Make Right Moral Choices For Life. I recommend it for parents, grandparents and anyone else who guides or mentors young people. Our society has drastically changed its standards and we must get back to the morals set forth in God's Word! I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.
I’ve read Josh McDowell books over the years and have never been disappointed. He’s easy to read, and lays out the things we need to know in a way that is very understandable. He uses scripture, as well as personal experiences, and probably experiences of others to teach us valuable lessons. His method of writing keeps your attention and helps you realize that you are not alone and this is not an impossible task. I think it took me a few evenings to complete the book, so not hard to read at all. Although I am a Grandmother, and this is not something I will use personally, I got the book since I babysit three grandchildren regularly, and also train foster and adoptive parents. I’ve had the opportunity to mentor young parents at our church, as well. I definitely see the problems around us today, as our media and society is preaching a different gospel to our young people, including telling them that the church and Jesus is not relevant or necessary in their lives. How do we reach them? Social Media is already way ahead of us – including pornography. Josh’s information on this area will blow your mind. This book shows the history of how we got here, as well as giving us very basic and easy to understand ideas of how to combat Satan in this age. Let’s just say he lays it on the line. It has always been a challenge to parent, but in today’s world so much more. Especially the people I meet that take in children with so much baggage coming from broken homes and feeling unworthy to the core. I will definitely be (and have already) recommending this book to parents around me. Every parent needs to read it – even if the kids aren’t teens yet. It’s coming! I received a complimentary copy of the book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.
Josh Mcdowell gives practical, biblical insight to helpings kids make good moral choices. You can easily read this and start applying how and why things are mostly right or wrong to your kids. You will learn a different, effective way to communicate to kids and get results. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review. I do highly recommend this book, because I am applying the principles in the book in our own home.
If you are a parent, especially a parent of a teenager, this book is a must-read. As parents we want desperately to instill in our kids the ability to distinguish right from wrong and empower them to make choices based on these principles. The problem lies in the fact that most of us have no idea how to do this. Telling our kids what's right and what's wrong only informs them of what their parents believe. How do we help them establish their own concepts and how can we assure that God's ways are the basis for their beliefs? Josh McDowell has explored this subject in depth and offers answers as to how we can help our children develop moral values in accordance with God's ways. With real life examples and candid discussion, Mr. McDowell guides us through these unknown waters, enabling us to reach out to our kids with understanding and enlightenment. I would recommend this book to anyone with children or grandchildren they pray grow up to follow God's ways. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.