Saturday, February 21, 2004

This blog about the book was encouraging in a funny sort of way. Reading it helped me better understand how different people have reacted to my first two books. It's by a spunky girl named Nikkiana who uses Tom's of Maine toothpaste and who likes iTunes. For these reasons alone I immediately like her. Her website is: http://everytomorrow.org

Nikkiana writes: "I bought Joshua Harris’s Not Even A Hint today. It’s a purchase I somewhat feel I have to justify, though I know I don’t really have to. I just feel like I do cause I feel like it might evoke some criticism.

In the past, I’ve been somewhat vocal as to my objections of Joshua Harris’s books I Kissed Dating Goodbye and Boy Meets Girl. With that being said, I suppose it seems kinda surprising that I bought Not Even a Hint… Maybe, maybe not… I’m actually thinking of buying I Kissed Dating Goodbye and Boy Meets Girl and giving them another go…

When I read I Kissed Dating Goodbye and Boy Meets Girl I was a baby Christian…. Not that I still am a baby Christian, I am in many ways, but at the time I read these books I had only been Christian for somewhere around three to six months, and I wasn’t really involved in a church. (I was attending a church, but wasn’t really a part of it.)

At the time, I found the books more discouraging than helpful. The books were written for teens/young adults who were rasied within the church. A good portion of the advice that I remember from the books involved parental and/or pastoral involvment. At the time, neither were available to me… Well, it wasn’t that pastoral involvment wasn’t available, it was more that I was a scared teenager who didn’t exactly know who to go to. (The church leadership at the church I was attending then was kinda confusing.)

My criticism of the books have little to do with the books themselves, rather my criticism has to do with the way many people react to the books. I’ve known people who’ve built themselves legalistic systems regarding dating… ahem… courtship based on these two books. I vehemately abhor legalism, to the point where I’ll end up sinning to avoid being part of someone else’s legalistic system.

Plus, after the Bible, these were the first two books tossed in my direction, and no one really took the time to sit down to explain to me, and reassure me that I was forgiven when I found that I’d pretty much done wrong everything that was in those books. I experienced a lot of guilt that I wasn’t sure what to do with when I was reading those books.

So, it wasn’t Joshua Harris. It was other people reading them and it was me. Now that I’m a bit more mature in my faith (though that’s questionable some days) and I’m actually part of a church where I feel comfortable going to people when I have questions and concerns, I think I might be ready to tackle Joshua Harris’s books again… although I know it won’t be easy, and I know I’m not going to like it."

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