rebelling against low expectations

Do Hard Things According To Kyleigh


Do Hard ThingsTeens in today’s world tend to give up too easily, and just do things that come easily. But who am I to be talking about this? Just today I was giving up, and then I was reminded of the motto of The Rebelution.

I call myself a Rebelutionary, yet today I was meeting all my low expectations and being who I don’t want to be. I was reminded as I got online this evening, that we’re supposed to Do Hard Things.

After all, we can do all things through Christ, right? So what’s the big deal? Why do we give up so easily? All we need to do is ask God for help, then try again. 1 Timothy 4:12 says, “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young.” We’re supposed to set an example for everyone. We, as youth, can encourage people with our faith, both people younger than us and older.

Living Do Hard Things

This afternoon, I pulled out my guitar and practiced. I struggled with a song, did it again, and it got a bit easier. Then I realized that over the past year nothing in my playing had changed. I hadn’t gotten any better, if anything, I was worse. Why? Because I didn’t want to do hard things and keep going through the books myself. So now I’m going to have to start again at the beginning. Well, Grade 2 anyway.

Then I played the piano. I gave up on a song that had been annoying me to no end for almost a week now. Then this evening I sat down, determined to play it, and played it through. It’s funny, how when we’re so determined to do something, we often end up doing it. It’s all a matter of really trying.

I tried to draw a person today. And yesterday. A person with their arms somewhere but down. I guess I just need more practice. So tomorrow, or the next time I sit down and draw, I’m going to just practice arms. Prayer and practice make perfect.

Then I gave up on my writing. I didn’t hit writer’s block, just a little rut. I’m out of it now, I just had to shut off my music — which usually helps me write — and think a little harder. I’ve thought much harder before. Sometimes we think that pushing ourselves will make us explode. Haha! Aren’t we funny?

Closing Thoughts

A couple things I want to pull out from a Rebelution article: “If you always do what you’ve always done, then you’ll always get what you’ve always had.”

Isn’t that true? If I keep up with just playing the guitar stuff I have now, I’ll keep getting disappointment. I’m not going to get where I want to go unless I start going there. You reap what you sow.

Well, I’ve got to run. But remember, don’t give up so easily. Do Hard Things. We can do anything through Christ. Now go out there and… and… and build a spaceship!

About The Authoress: My name is Kyleigh. I’m thirteen-years-old. Some would call me short, others vertically challenged. I am wonderfully made. I’ve been called nerdy, freaky, dorky, and weird — I can’t help that God’s given me a desire to learn. Other than learning, I love history, dance, fencing, music (I play guitar and piano), animals, and God and the love He’s given us.

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About the author

Alex and Brett Harris

are the co-founders of and co-authors of Do Hard Things and Start Here. They have a passion for God and for their generation. Their personal interests include politics, filmmaking, music, and basketball. They are both graduates of Patrick Henry College in Purcellville, Virginia.


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  • Wow, that was wonderful. Very encouraging…I really needed that right now. Thanks Kyleigh! God bless you


  • That was great, Kyleigh! It is easy to think of “Hard Things” in terms of BIG things, but often the Hard Things God sends our way are woven into our normal, day-to-day routine. Thank you for the reminder to strive for excellence in all we do, to the glory of God.

    In Christ Alone,
    Bess B.

  • I agree with Bess…After reading Kyleigh’s post I haver a better understanding about doing hard things! I confess I was still a little unsure. I kept hearing about the BIG things that teens were doing, like Eve Vertes, that kinda made feel like a had to have this strong drive to things, be a prodigy, that would gain attention from all over the place.

    It’s much simpler then that.

    Thank you Kyleigh.

  • Great point, Bess and Lucy. ‘Do hard things’ is both. If we’re faithful in little, God says, we’ll be put over much. The reason why we do hard things is to get stronger, so we can tackle something even greater for God. The truth is, the character and competence necessary to do those “big” hard things is developed by faithfully doing the “small” hard things, every day. 🙂

  • Hey! This was such a wonderful post! It encouraged me lots! I just started playing the guitar, and I get really aggervated sometimes because I can switch chords fast enough, etc. and I know it will take lots of work to even just learn the chords. So, this really made me determined to practice for GOD. I hadn’t ever really thought of it much that way until you brought this up. I didn’t realize that hard things could be practicing a talent that God has given us to worship him! I have played the piano for 6 years, and this past semester, it seems like I just really really practiced every single day, and it payed off. I am going to keep on practicing really hard and not give up. Why do we give up so easily, I don’t understand. “For my strength is made perfect in weakness.” Jesus takes our inablity to do something, but a willing heart, and He can move so much if we are willing. But I just realized that if we give up, how can we be effective witnesses to witness for God if we are giving up on the things he has given us a talent to do. He never said it would be easy. He told us to “Follow Him” I REALLY appreciate this post. It got me thinking alot about how I am going to do hard things determined to praise God.

  • Hey. I don’t konw if this will get posted or not because I don’t have a blog or anything; I have just been visiting this rebelution site for a while.
    i first must say that this is positively amazing. God has really blessed you, Alex and Brett, with wonderful motivation and Godliness and self-discipline to keep such a blog up and running and to also keep up with the book you are writing and the conferences. You truly are as you put it, “doing hard things.” i commend you and those who contribute to this cause.
    But i do want to comment that i don’t think we should be doing hard things just for the sake of doing hard things. I believe that is an unhealthy attiutude to take that could lead to pride and to looking down on those who don’t accomplish as much as we do. It could also lead to unnecessary discouragement when we aren’t as successful as we wanted to be. We can’t humanly excel in everything that we do; and we shouldn’t always try to. If we tried to master 7 instruments at once because 6 wasn’t hard enough, we might end up wiping ourselves out and allowing it to distract us from more important things in life. I think doing hard things is a means to and end and that end being glorifying God. Doing hard things shouldn’t be the end itself.
    That being said, i must also say that from reading many other posts on your blog I know that isn’t what you, Alex and Brett or whoever wrote this post, were trying to encourage in your writing. I know your hearts are centered on Christ.

  • Thank you so much for this post! It was just what I needed today. I’m not sure about all of you, but I feel that sometimes it’s more difficult to do the little things I really don’t feel like doing than to do great big things for God. But I know if God can’t trust me to be faithful in little, everyday things, then He can’t trust me to do anything great for Him. I heard three children give a special item once, and though the lyrics are very simple, I think we can all learn from them.

    Faithful in little things, ’cause little things make big things
    Big things are done by doing little things every day
    Small things make all things, and tiny things make tall things
    Faithful in little things every day

    I’m preaching to myself here too. God bless as we all do “little” difficult things for Him!

  • Excellent post! I think that perhaps in some ways, “Do Hard Things” just means doing the things you don’t really want to do, like play a hard song on the piano.

    Alex and Brett, I’ve never commented before, but I’ve been lurking on your site for several months now. Thank you for such a wonderful site with thought-provoking articles! This is indeed a message our generation needs to hear.

    That said, I was wondering if you would consider adding our blog (I co-author it with my two friends) to your list of rebelutionaries’ blogs. I understand that you like to read the suggested blog for a few months before posting it, so I thought I would give you our address in case you are interested. It’s
    God Bless,

  • Kyleigh, that was an excellent post!
    It is amazing how God can use our situations to encourage others to press on, and to show them things which they might not have thought of before.

    Your post certainly did that for me.

    Sometimes it almost seems alot easier to say, “Ok, I’m going to climb that steep mountain today.” than, “I am going to be faithful along this pathway that I’m on, step by step.”
    Of course it is great if God has called us to climb the steep mountains, but I know my life is made up more of being faithful even when it doesn’t seem exciting.


    ~Lady Tai

  • Great post Kyleigh! It really encouraged me.
    I agree with you Melissa, I fully understand what you said.
    Great way to put it Bess, I continually have to remind myself of that.

    A sister in Christ

  • Great post Kyleigh! Thanks for bringing the “Do Hard Things” down to a practical, everyday life application! Keep up the great work! And keep practicing that guitar! 😉

  • Wow, great post. I really needed this today, the summer is such a good time to loose focus, but at the same time: it’s such a wonderful time to regain focus in our lives of what is most important.

    Thanks again!

    In Christ,

  • Kyleigh, you are a great writer! I really enjoyed your post.

    It always amazes me what God can and will do when we do hard things.

    When I was around 7 or 8 my parents decided to move and get out of debt. We had no idea where we were going, but we moved in faith – a really hard thing. After God tested us, we met a lady who said that there was a farm for rent. It was small, but only $700 a month. As we rented our 90 year old landlady began to rely on us, and before we knew it she decided that we didn’t have to pay rent anymore! God has bless my family, and now we have our own business Remembrance Press!

    By serving God, and doing hard things, His abundance will be made known. Hard things are not only large things. They range from what you do when you are on the computer alone to what your goals are. God has blessed us with EVERY spiritual blessing he has, it is our job to use them.

    Ephesians 1:3
    “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.”

  • Wow, Kyleigh, that was GREAT. I’m totally impressed with your writing, and very challenged by the things you said. Yes… let’s DO hard things!

  • Hi, I am a member of ONE and I was wondering if you guys support Bono’s ONE Campaign? I think it would be great if you did a post urging your reads to sign the ONE declaration at

  • ONE does things those who profess Christ should being doing. However I would admonish those who love Christ to do this in a manner which does not become another voice for Bono’s humanistic agenda.

    Do we need to love and help the poor? Yes. Would Jesus reach out to those who are despised, rejected, and afflicted with AIDS? Undoubtedly. But would Christ do it in a manner that promotes man’s “goodness”? Would Christ do it through an avenue who’s worldview and agenda excuses sexual sin? A philosophy that robs God of His supreme glory? I doubt it.

    Bono’s message screams of humanism and sadly ignores God. All you have to do is go to the ONE home page and you’re confronted with “To Make Poverty History”. But Jesus said, “The poor you will always have with you”.

    But before I end up making this a self-righteous tirade, let me say this. Chris is trying to do hard things. Chris is doing something. I am sitting on my couch blogging and doing nothing. We should hear Chris’ plea and be motivated into action. Maybe this can take a turn and become a discussion on starting a new Christ-exalting project to these needy people. Has not God chosen those who are poor to be rich in faith? Has He not chosen the things that are not to nullify the things that are? I believe God has a special watch over and place for those who experience suffering in this life.

    They need Christ. Physical help and humanistic philosophy only make people comfortably slide into hell. To do that is really no loving care at all. While Bono probably does these “good” things because he has found no lasting satisfaction in the “rock star” life and seeks it elsewhere – while his motives probably on their deepest level are not motivated by love but to find some purpose for himself – he has shamed us.

    What are we going to do to be Christ’s nail scarred hand extending out to the needy around us? The hand that not only touches the physical need, but uses that missionally to address the much more important need of the soul.

    I am the guiltiest of all. We need to pray for the heart and eyes of Christ. I thank God that He even uses dishonorable vessels like Bono to awaken the vessels He has appointed for honorable use. May our hearts be stirred to action. May we also pray that these influential individuals would see and savor Christ, and thus continue their excellent work to the glory of His name. By appropriately coming alongside them perhaps we can be a light to that end.

    We owe Chris a thank you for being brave enough to act and call others to follow. My prayer is that God’s working in you would not be humanly wasted but be used mightily for His name as you are sensitive to Him. I trust that by His grace He is doing great things through you. Keep up the good work and keep Him preeminent and you will have a work which will not burn up but stand the test.

  • This is so encouraging!
    I’m a new rebelutionary and just started reading Do Hard Things. I’m not sure where to start, but I know God has much for me to do. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for everyone and anyone who has contributed to this.

  • I totally agree! I am 13 too…and I have given up on so many things when I probably should have kept going..and prayed to God to help me keep going through with it! I’ve quit about 4 instruments because they were either to hard or I thought they were boring. But now, I’ve found one that I really enjoy playing…the piano! I am really glad that I read this Blog. It was very encouraging and well put! Great job Kyleigh!!! 🙂


  • Hi, Kyleigh!!
    This is Ari from Florida…I love your blog!! That is so cool that you are on here and I found you!! Keep writing, you are amazing at it!

  • When i think of hard things i think of going down niagra falls in a barrel or clim bing mount everest! but realy the hardest thing to do is the thing to be done

  • loved your blog! i play guitar 2 and i wanted to encourage you to keep on practicing-it’s such a fun instrument!

    love in Christ,

    -kiley ( we have the same name-just spelled differently! :p )

  • Hey Kileigh =D !!

    Wow, that’s very encouraging, thanks ! I’m getting very interested in doing ‘hard things’ and what you wrote there really encouraged me, the piano part mostly ^^

    God bless you


  • Hi Kyleigh! I really loved your post. As I was reading it, I thought “Wow…that sounds just like me.” I’ve noticed how I’ve been slacking off and not being as determined with the piano and guitar, like you also said in the article. Thank you for writing this. You’ve given me a lot of encouragement!! Now I’ll go out and learn some new songs. Or build a spaceship! 😉

    Love, Gina

  • Wow, thanks so much for sharing that, Kyleigh! That really encouraged me as I was about to start my day.

    In Christ,

  • Hello, would you mind telling me which blog platform that you’re using? I’m trying to start a website rite now. I’m having a hard time deciding which blog platformto use. I’m asking cause your blog looks neet. Sorry for being so off-topic but I just had to ask!

  • Love it! I agree! I am 13 and today I found myself wanting to give up babysitting… Do Hard THings!….. Go Girl!!!

  • Thank you. Even though you wrote this about 6 yrs ago, God had me see this now. And I’m glad he chose tonight. Thank you for writing this. You have inspired me.

    In Him,

rebelling against low expectations

The Rebelution is a teenage rebellion against low expectations—a worldwide campaign to reject apathy, embrace responsibility, and do hard things. Learn More →