Five Things Josh Harris Forgot

Josh Harris | This is not a show that will bash Josh Harris, a previous bestseller, Christian pastor and evangelical leader and author of books that many Christians and many homeschoolers loved. What I will do is point out the five things I believe he forgot in his journey from seeking what people thought about his book. | #podcast #homeschoolpodcast #ikisseddatinggoodbye #joshharrisFive Things Josh Harris Forgot Episode 368

This is not a show that will bash Josh Harris, a previous bestseller, Christian pastor and evangelical leader and author of books that many Christians and many homeschoolers loved. What I will do is point out the five things I believe he forgot in his journey from seeking what people thought about his book.

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My heart grieves for Josh Harris and I will share why in a bit, but as I think about his situation there are some major points I feel he completely forgot. I have not watched his entire documentary that was filmed with clips from the people he interviewed that were harmed or liked his book, mostly it was the latter as the title is, “I Survived I Kissed Dating Goodbye.” He apologizes in the film and I think apologies are always good, they are freeing but he is personally taking responsibility for a movement that flamed within many Evangelical churches that he truly had no idea would happen.

Point #1 – People Have Free Will.

Sorry. God gave us free will. Each person who read your book made a decision to follow your advice or not. People need to take responsibility for their own actions – there is a lacking of this in our society.

As an author I have first-hand experience with this, having written many books from 1994 to the present day. Years ago, my daughter and I co-authored the Truth Seekers Mystery Series. These are action-adventure novels, that focus on archaeology, paleontology, and anthropology. We called them Truth Seekers because we wanted our readers to seek truth in their lives, the dialogue contained both sides of an argument with both teens and adults.

I taught my children to learn by investigating, asking questions and research from three primary sources. I didn’t want them to read someone else’s interpretation of what happened, which is why I will give a link to the statement Josh Harris made about his book. Here is his official statement.

Point #2 – Do Not Throw Out The Baby With The Bath Water

We had two books that Josh Harris wrote. The first is, “I Kissed Dating Goodbye,” and the second one “Boy Meets Girl,” a quick search shows the Kindle version received 366 stars on Amazon that resulted in a rating of 4.6 stars. Not bad. He had good information to share and I think what I liked about his books is his authenticity in sharing his struggle and his ultimate victory in what he believed was an ideal method for dating.

Josh wrote an apology in his statement that said, in essence, if I hurt you I’m sorry and if I helped you I am happy. But, because I think this is flawed, I’m pulling sales of the book.

We read the books and felt that parts of the books made great sense. The part, we as a family liked is that teen dating and breaking up had become an epidemic that set kids up for heartbreak at a young age. We never told our kids, you have to do this, or this is our family rule. We said, “What do you think.” Of course the twelve-year-old thought it was great advice and then as she matured and was eighteen, she asked for some leeway which we gave her.

My parents were super strict, they didn’t let me date in high school other than one prom date (that my father accepted for me) when I was a Senior in High school–and not with the person I wanted to go with, you have to read my book, One More Child to hear that story.) However, I didn’t want to be as strict as my parents but I did want some parameters and I thought Josh’s book did that well.

I would never credit him for my success or failure in parenting because I read his books and encouraged my kids to read them. I think his book contained caution for a world that is hurting. Why not put out a revised edition with some cautions? Why ax it totally? I can’t answer that question.

Point #3 – Love Comes From Above First Before It Comes From Within

The source of all love comes from above and once we know God we can have this love within and then share it with others. We have to pray and search our hearts for what God calls us to do, should we marry, go into ministry, be celibate. It is a personal relationship. I know that some people, some churches took his information as the gospel truth without looking at the gospel. A book can guide but it can not make someone do something, point number one!

Point #4 – No One In This World Can Always Make You Happy

I think a bunch of criticism is that his book taught a method that people followed and had a disastrous outcome, while some said his method worked. But the main point is that no person on earth can fill that void that belongs to God. God created us to love Him, and if we do not love Him first, we will always seek for that true love that will never be fulfilling.

Point #5 -Applying The Bible To Dating Is A Good Idea

God gave us life and we, as thankful Christians should look to the Word of God in the Bible for advice. God said, “…go forth and multiply…” He didn’t give us a direct path, but if we proceed based on the love of God and His will for our life no matter what happens we will always have God. That makes no sense to someone who is not a Christian or who doesn’t have a relationship with God. When Harris wrote the book he was committed and he loved the Lord and wrote what he felt the Lord was teaching. It is up to each individual (read point one above) to pray, discern and seek God. Even life’s rejections can be a learning tool and healing for all of us.

Unfortunately, I read that Josh and his wife are getting a divorce and for this, I grieve. I will pray for him, for her, for their children. Divorce is heartbreaking no matter who it happens to and is never a cause to rejoice or point fingers.

Friends, what we can learn is that while books are great for teaching and even sermons, teachings, podcasts, etc., it is important to have a spirit of discernment (which is free by the way, just pray for it!) and critical thinking, and making up our own decisions. I pray that a new generation of young people do not think his apology means that everything is wrong with waiting to date, to kiss and to have intimate relationships until we get married.

I’ll leave you with one thought before we point to others with blame take a hard look at yourself. Take responsibility for your own actions! Look at your relationship with God and your hopes and dreams. Do you even know what you believe? Do you have a firm foundation in Christ. If not, get on your knees and pray. It begins with one person. You. And it begins today.

 

 

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