Today’s culture doesn’t encourage men to grow up. Everyone from pastors to op-ed columnists have described a crisis of masculinity, fostered by a media culture that uniformly make men the butts of jokes. Men are much more likely to give up on life than women. One indicator of this is the large gender difference in suicide rates—men are four times more likely than women to drop out of life. This points to a profound lack of effective mentoring of men, especially in the church. Dave Bruskas seeks to fill in this gap with this book. Two decades ago, Dave lost his only infant son to a congenital heart defect. That devastating loss fueled his desire to provide effective mentoring to young men. Dear Son contains the guidance and insights Dave would have given his son if he had lived through the milestones of growing up: from first dates to first jobs, from weddings to births, from friendships to funerals. Dear Son contains heartfelt wisdom for life’s journey, especially for guys—and for those who want to strengthen them.
I love this book! Each chapter begins with a letter from Bruskas to his son. For me, it was my favorite part of the book. The heartbreak that the Bruskas family still feels in palpable on the pages of this book. Although the letters were so meaningful, the lessons following the letters were great, too.
Bruskas shares life lessons he learned personally and through mentoring other young men. The topics are varied, but each lesson centers on encouraging young men to honor God as they grow and mature through all phases of life.
I think this book has many applications. It would be a great resource for ministry leaders to use in a small group with young men, or for a group of like-minded young men to read and discuss together. I can see a father and son reading it and discussing it together. However, I think the most important way it could be used is for a young man without a father or father-figure in his life to read it and internalize the lessons within the pages. Bruskas offers the leadership that young men need and that some do not have.
If you are a man looking for a book to help you raise a Godly young man, or have a man in your life, this is an excellent book! If you are a single mother with sons, this book might help you think of ways to encourage your son as he grows in the faith.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Net Galley in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.