Matt’s Story

When I wrote What I Wish I Knew at 18, I thought it would especially speak into the lives of young people who desperately need a roadmap to healthy, honorable living. Kids who aren’t receiving it from home for the reasons we all know. Kids who deserve the best modeling but who are in circumstances beyond their control. Kids who need an advocate to give them the best chance at an amazing life.
A few months ago, I met with Matt, an incredible man who epitomizes a life of significance. He devotes his life to serving others—mainly teens and young adults in a very “tough” community—and had a story he wanted to share with me.
Two months earlier, at a youth gathering, 16-year old John asked Matt to meet in private. Desperate, John begged for advice. “I have no father in my life and my mom is a severe alcoholic. I’m trying to learn to parent myself and have nowhere else to turn.”
Needless to say, Matt was overwhelmed by the depth of John’s situation, by his loss of hope and lack of direction. Matt promised John they’d walk through this difficult period together and…there was a book he wanted to share.
For the next two months, Matt and John met regularly, going through What I Wish I Knew at 18 one chapter at a time. In Matt’s eyes, it was “mentoring with a purpose.” Each week he saw changes in John and their relationship deepened. Matt could already see the impact of their weekly discussions.
After finishing the last chapter, John thanked Matt profusely for investing in him. Fighting back tears, his concluding words said it all, “Now I know what it must be like to have a loving dad in your life.”
Do you know a young person who could use some hope, encouragement, and direction? Someone you’d be willing to invest in with the help of a third party voice of life wisdom written just for them? YOU might be just the gift they’re looking for.

Are you—or do you know—a mentor who can step into the gap with a young adult?

Are you—or do you know—a parent trying to prepare a teen for a successful life?

Are you—or do you know—an educator endeavoring to develop college and career ready students prepared to achieve their full potential?

We’re here to help. Preparing young people for a thriving adulthood is the mission of LifeSmart Publishing. Click here to order your copy of What I Wish I Knew at 18:Life Lessons for the Road Ahead and the accompanying student manual. And share this with a friend. Together was CAN empower the next generation.


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