I had set aside, Do Hard Things for my son this year in our school and I was still contemplating what I should do for my daughter. Love Riot came at just the right moment. I picked it up and read a chapter, set it down, and did the many mom things. Then I picked it up again, and found every excuse under the sun not to put it down until I could finish it.
While marketed for teens to rise up and “live with relentless abandon for Christ,” I was finding that it was convicting ME of so many issues.
The problem I have with many books for teens these days is that it is watered down truths. “But they are still young,” I hear all the time, but really I’m not asking for something beyond their level! I’m asking for simple biblical truths, not diluted, so that our teens grow and not remain stagnant! And Sara Barratt far surpassed my expectation. Barratt writes as a teen and cries out against the low expectations of her generation (and those to come), and pleads with her fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, to live more radically and more Christ-like in a self-centered age.
Barratt breaks her book up into small sections that are going to be just the right bite size for my (almost) teen and I to work through together without getting overwhelmed by information, statistics, and God’s word. The message is hard stuff but it is also presented in a very loving and straightforward way. I appreciate that. Barratt is asking for a full commitment to God’s way of life, not a “teen version of God.”
I was thoroughly impressed. I did cringe a few times over the idea of “falling in love” with God. I know its a common use but it still tenses me up a bit. While she never went so far as to call Christ her boyfriend (thank you, Sara!) I still associate that terminology of falling in love with Jesus, as connected to the idea that Christ is your boyfriend. And it would just be hard to tell a boy to fall in love with Jesus…
One more thing I would like to address: is this book just for girls? I think because Barratt has a more passionate approach to this book, I don’t know that it would resonate with my boys as much as Do Hard Things by Brett and Alex Harris but Brett Harris did write the forward for this book, so that should be a great endorsement right there. But for my family, I think this would appeal to my ladies while the straightforwardness of Alex and Brett Harris would sit more strongly with my boys.
This book is on tour with Celebrate Lit. All thoughts are my own and I was given a copy in exchange for my honest opinion. There is a chance to win this book for yourself, so make sure you read all the blog tour’s information below.
About the Book
Book: Love Riot
Author: Sara Barratt
Genre: Christian non-fiction
Release Date: May 5, 2020
Have you ever thought about walking away from the church? Have you already left it in your heart? Does it seem like it’s not relevant to your life?
It’s time for a revolution. A holy uprising. A love riot.
Not content with safe religion that demands nothing of us, Sara Barratt is calling you to stop giving in to the status quo and devote yourself fully to Christ, following Him no matter what your friends do or the culture around you promotes. Sara challenges you to hand everything over–your comfort zones, your time, your loyalty, your pride–and invites you to embark on a radical journey of passionate love for Christ. Because once you experience His love, it will transform your life.
Love Riot is a battle cry from one teen to another to embrace a life of wholehearted commitment and relentless abandon for Christ . . . no matter the cost.
“Sara Barratt wants to start a riot. An uproar. A disturbance for Jesus. Unlike some teenagers who want to disrupt and destroy, she wants to bravely build.”–Kyle Idleman, author of Not a Fan and Don’t Give Up and senior pastor of Southeast Christian Church
“God is at work among my generation. There’s no denying that, especially after reading Love Riot. This book will challenge you, encourage you, and ignite your pursuit of Christ. I highly recommend it!”–Jaquelle Crowe Ferris, author of This Changes Everything
“Love Riot will challenge your idea of what it means to be a teen who truly follows Christ. Sara Barratt raises the bar and calls her peers to a higher standard. This book has the power to change lives!”–Kristen Clark and Bethany Beal, authors of Sex, Purity, and the Longings of a Girl’s Heart and cofounders of GirlDefined Ministries
Click here to get your copy!
About the Author
Sara Barratt is an author, speaker, avid reader, chocolate lover, and lead editor for TheRebelution.com. Her passion is challenging and encouraging teens to live sold out and set apart for Jesus. Come hang out with her on Facebook, Instagram, and at her website, sarabarratt.com.
More from Sara
Why are teens leaving the church?
Why are my friends drifting away from God?
What does it look like to be a teen who wholeheartedly follows Jesus?
In my early teens, I began wrestling with these questions. God was working on my own heart, shaking me out of my complacency, and leading me to a deeper walk with Him. Yet I knew I wasn’t the only teen battling apathy and the low expectations of our culture.
Everywhere I looked, I saw the evidence.
Friends drifting away from God. Compromise slipping in. Peer pressure strengthening.
It broke my heart to see these teens struggling. Because I’d walked in their struggles as well.
Teens like eighteen-year-old Brayden who said, “I’ve never pursued a passionate relationship with Christ, because I’ve never had anyone to share it with. No one else I know takes God seriously.”
Or like sixteen-year-old Trevor who realized something was missing. “I know God is real. I’ve seen Him work in other people’s lives, but I can’t find the strength to change, so I’ve just put God on the back burner.”
These are the words from real teens, battling in the trenches of an apathetic, post-truth, anti-Christian culture. We’re wrestling through questions and doubts about God and Christianity as our peers, the media, and the culture around us feed us a myriad of messages, trying to influence our hearts. Some stand strong. Most give in.
Something needs to change.
Is it possible for teens to reject apathy and live sold out for Jesus? Is it possible to turn our backs to the culture and choose to follow Christ? Is it possible, that instead of a generation leaving the church, we could become a generation building the church, living for the glory of God?
My journey of writing Love Riot began with these questions, but ended with this answer.
God has not given up on this generation. On the contrary, I believe He has more in store for us than we can imagine. The power which rose Jesus Christ from the dead can raise up the spiritually dying remains of this generation and spark a passion in teenager’s souls for His name.
The world, and even the church, doesn’t automatically think of teenagers as passionate followers of Christ—but I’m out to change that.
In this new generation arising, it’s my heart-cry to see a remnant living out the message of the gospel, embracing our commission to go out and make disciples.
It’s not an easy journey. It requires risk. Sacrifice. Surrender. But as Jesus said, the life of a follower isn’t safe. It’s not just a call to pray a prayer and be saved. It’s a call to lay down your life and be transformed. Luke 9:23 counts the cost, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.”
For every teen, for every adult, for everyone who desires to follow Jesus, it’s time to pick up our cross, and in the words of Elisabeth Elliot, “live a life of reckless abandon for the Lord, putting all [our] energy and strength into it.”
It’s time for a love riot.
Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, July 3
Artistic Nobody, July 4 (Author Interview)
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 5
Remembrancy, July 6
Simple Harvest Reads, July 7 (Author Interview)
Emily Yager, July 8
Inklings and notions, July 9
Texas Book-aholic, July 10
Happily Managing a Household of Boys, July 11
For Him and My Family, July 12
Mary Hake, July 13
SODBUSTERLIVING, July 14
Through the Fire Blogs, July 15 (Author Interview)
deb’s Book Review, July 15
Just the Write Escape, July 16
To celebrate her tour, Sara is giving away the grand prize package of a signed copy of the book and a $25 Amazon gift card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.