Friday, August 10, 2012

Litfuse Blog Tour: Live to Give

About the Book: 
Want to do something for God but don’t know what? Want to help others but don’t know who? Want to know what it is you’re really good at doing? Your gifts may feel small and insignificant. But God can use them to work a miracle! 

Inspired by the biblical story of the feeding of the 5,000, "Live to Give" delivers a message of hope that we all have something to give. Written in the down-to-earth, candid voice of the gifted young man who as a kid founded a relief ministry that has saved and improved countless lives in Africa, "Live to Give" is the message that every teen needs to hear: You are more special than you know, and you can do big things. 

Jesus proved that no gift is too small when He used five loaves and two fish to feed a crowd of thousands. And if no gift is too small, too ordinary, or too random, there is no limit to what the youth of today can accomplish! 

A teenage philanthropist who has built a high school, two medical clinics, and a dormitory in Africa—all before the age of 16—Austin Gutwein shares how to take what may seem like the simplest of talents, gifts, and interests and use them for something Jesus can use to move mountains. 

My Review: 
I rarely read non-fiction books, but after this read, I came away with a deeper desire to find out what I have to give to others. I was surprised to find out that this book was written by a teenager and that alone was encouraging. 

The first chapter was very clear: God doesn't need your help. But He definitely wants it. This concept reminded me of the verse found in John 15:16,

You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit--fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. 

Austin is wise beyond his years and it shows through his writing and thought-provoking study questions. The message of giving spoke to my heart and encouraged me to give more of myself in God's service. Through this book I've become more aware of the struggles of others and aware that, if even in a small way, I can help. 

I found Austin's writing to be jam-packed with humor. After reading a few chapters, this boy's love for food is obvious and he uses that to his advantage in teaching and making the message more understandable. Jokes here and there, real life experiences and internal struggles help in making the read relatable. Aside from the fun, this study was also very scripture based which I loved. His writing style appeals to teens but his message applies to everyone. 

Each chapter provided practical and profound action steps to discovering what I have to give. I also found insight in each chapter as Austin prepared the reader for controversies and conflicts (like bullies) that would arise when they would seek their purpose.

The reason that I love fiction books is that within their pages, "there are stories that touch your heart." I found a few of those here. Just between you an me, I almost cried when Austin shared the story of George on page 175 and said, "her son had lived to give." Those words caused tears to trickle down my face as I realized how even the smallest things, like a pink soccer ball, could make a difference in some one's life. 

I rate Live to Give 5 out of 5 stars! This Biblical-based study is sure to open your eyes, spur you "on toward love and good deeds", and definitely make you laugh. I would recommend it to everyone! Don't think that because this is a non-fiction book, that it's boring. It's the exact opposite. I read the book in two days! Austin wrote that after I finished the book that I had to give it to someone else. I may just consider doing that:)

About Austin: 

As founder of Hoops of Hope, Austin started what is now known as the worlds largest Free-Throw marathon. Austin's Hoops of Hope has raised more than $2.5M to help orphan children in Africa. Austin also serves as Co-Chair of Arizona Governor Jan Brewer's Youth Council. As a highly sought after speaker, Austin has spoken and shared his heart in venues around the world. In 2009, Austin was selected into the Caring Hall of Fame as one of the top 10 most caring Americans. 

Austin's first book, "Take Your Best Shot" shared stories that captured readers hearts and won a Moonbeam Award. For information on booking Austin or general inquiries, please visit


  1. This sounds like a great book. I definetly want to read it. :)

  2. What a great review; I would love to read it now! If you are looking for a similar book, try reading "Do Hard Things". The standards that society sets for children and teens are so low these days; the need so much motivation to do even the littlest of tasks. Then again, you hear about kids like Austin who give all they have to help others. Thank you for this :) God Bless

    1. Thanks the book suggestion!

      Austin touched that exact point concerning the standards society sets for children and teens. It is so encouraging to find godly young men and women who have a desire to go against to unfortunate norm of selfishness and live for others and Christ!


"And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true,and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise." PhilIppians 4:8

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