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True Stories that Will Inspire Courage in Boys

True stories that will inspire courage in boys


As the oldest child in my family, I always wished I had an older brother. For that reason I hoped that my first child would be a boy. Now that God has brought my desire to fruition – our oldest three children are boys – I’m not always quite sure what to do with them! How to understand them, nurture them, train them.

One thing I do know is that they don’t always want to be thought of as boys. They want to be seen as men. To demonstrate their manliness, they want to prove their courage.

So I’ve been thinking about courage lately. What is it? What does it look like? Where does it come from? I don’t have it all figured out. But I am convinced that developing courage in boys is an activity I want to support.


I believe that the strength and godly courage expected of Joshua when he led the Israelites into the land God promised them thousands of years ago will also be required of the young men we are raising today.


Please join me at 30 Days of Raising Boys (hosted by Kaylene Yoder) where I’m discussing 6 Keys for Developing Courage in Every Boy.


Is your son prepared to meet the challenges of his world with honor? You need to know these keys for developing courage in every boy's heart.


There are a variety of ways to inspire courage in the hearts of our young men. One that my boys are particularly fond of is reading (or hearing) real-life stories of boys and men who demonstrate courage. My oldest two are currently pre-teens, so here’s a list of stories they approve! We’d love to hear your suggestions in the comments.


The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Young Readers Edition by William Kamkwamba

The Boys Who Challenged Hitler: Knud Pedersen and the Churchill Club by Phillip Hoose

Courage Has No Color by Tanya Lee Stone

Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage by Alfred Lansing

Eric Liddell: Pure Gold: A New Biography of the Olympic Champion Who Inspired Chariots of Fire by David McCasland

Fearless: The Undaunted Courage and Ultimate Sacrifice of Navy SEAL Team SIX Operator Adam Brown by Eric Blehm

Gifted Hands by Ben Carson and Cecil Murphey (there’s also a revised edition for elementary grade readers)

The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics by Daniel James Brown

Life Without Limits: Inspiration for a Ridiculously Good Life by Nick Vujicic

Unbroken (The Young Adult Adaptation): An Olympian’s Journey from Airman to Castaway to Captive by Laura Hillenbrand

ZVI : The Miraculous Story of Triumph Over the Holocaust by Elwood McQuaid

Seven Men: And the Secret of Their Greatness by Eric Metaxes


Please note: Not all these books fall into the category of Christian literature. Some may contain objectionable language or references. Preview the books, so you know what you are comfortable giving your kids.


You may also be interested to read: 3 Acts of Courage for a Teen by my friend Belinda at Live Life With Your Kids.


What non-fiction books would you recommend for inspiring courage in boys?


Shared at: Grace & Truth, Coffee & Conversation, Literacy Musing Monday, Nourishing Joy, The Deliberate Mom.

Mom's Morning Coffee

This post contains Amazon affiliate links. Purchasing through a link does not change your cost; Joy In My Kitchen does appreciate your support.


  1. Great list. Mao’s Last Dancer by Liu Cunxin gets my vote for addition.

  2. These are great picks, Abi! Courage is an important attribute to teach our children, boys and girls alike and these books are a great tool to do that.

    It was lovely to see you on #SHINEbloghop this week. Thanks for sharing these inspiring books with us! Have a great weekend.

  3. Eric Lidle is one of my favorites STILL! I just recalled a few inspiring stories about him and was sharing with my brother. Definitely excellent for boys of all ages! Thanks for sharing this list 🙂

  4. Good Morning, Abi!

    Over the past few weeks, I’ve been praying about a way that I could encourage other bloggers who have been encouraging me. Through your ministry, posts, words, comments, and faithfulness—your life has been a blessing to mine, and I wanted others to know about you!

    So, I compiled a list of those bloggers who I’ve personally found to be the MOST INSPIRATIONAL on the web.

    You are ONE Of these bloggers – in my estimation!

    You can find the link to the list where you are featured here: http://www.melanieredd.com/the-100-most-inspiring-christian-blogs-on-the-web/

    I’ve also signed up to get your emails, and tried to follow you on your social media outlets!

    I pray that God will encourage you today through these simple acts~

    • You truly are an encourager, Melanie!

      Thank you for your kind words and willingness to spread the love of Christ wide.

      Blessings, Abi

  5. Thanks for sharing my post on courage. You are spot on true stories do teach courage don’t they. I’m reminded on the idea of sharing our testimony – as Christians when we hear how God has been at work, it builds our faith – which in turn builds our courage.

    • So true, Belinda – reviewing God’s work in our lives (to ourselves or for others) certainly builds our faith and spurs the courage to keep on.

  6. Thank you for being part of this great series! Loved partnering with you! Blessings to you!


  1. […] Abi in JoyInMyKitchen.com – True Stories That Inspire Courage in Boys – A great list of non-fiction, and if you haven’t read Unbroken: A World War II Story […]

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