Book Review: Die Young by Hayley and Michael DiMarco

January 21, 2012

Die Young: Burying Your Self in Christ by Hayley and Michael DiMarco is a new book out by Crossway.  The theme for the book is a necessary call in our narcissistic age.

Our society is constantly pursuing all of the personal trappings of life, but seems to be missing life as it was designed for us.  The DiMarcos call readers to forego a pursuit that is bound to leave one at loss.  Instead they say that the gospel flips this pursuit on its head.

Instead of seeking this kind of life, we should seek to die.  Die that we might live.

So death is the new life for those who have been buried in Christ, who have given up the right to themselves and thrown themselves headlong into the arms of the Father; for you who know the truth that “you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God” (Col. 3:3).

–Page 40

The book is neatly divided into chapters that demonstrate the call to flip what we want upside down.

1.  Death is the New Life

2.  Down is the New Up

3.  Less is the New More

4.  Weak is the New Strong

5.  Slavery is the New Freedom

6.  Confession is the New Innocence

7.  Red is the New White

As you can tell from the chapter titles, the normal pursuits of our age should begin with going in the opposite direction from what seems normal.  We want life that is moving up.  We want more.  We want to be strong and free.  We want to be innocent and clean.  However, we can attain none of these on our own.  The DiMarcos call on us to turn these desires around and follow the lead of Jesus.  Crucifixion preceded resurrection.  Death preceded life.

This call is one that needs to be heard and heeded.

The book is an easy read in which the reader interacts with the authors’ own journey of dying to self in order that they might live.  While the message is fairly clear, the writing style and book arrangement does get in the way at times.

Sentence structure is often poor and the personal encounters are interspersed in ways that can derail the flow of the message.  The authors also seem to rely on some modern sayings that might not hold water.  For example, we have all heard about the definition of insanity.  I am not convinced this is a wise saying, but the DiMarcos use it as a vital part of their argument.

My other concern is part of the title.  It would better have been, Die: Buring Yourself with Christ.  Omitting the word “young” would have been beneficial.  As a reader in his 50’s, I began the book wondering if it would apply to me.  I kept waiting for “young” to be discussed since the word made it into the title.  I never found a good discussion on this.

The good news about this is that the book does apply to me.  But I wish I would have read it without this question lingering in the back of my mind.  My own application is that I wish I had lived this way at a younger age.

If you would like to read other reviews of this book, check out these reviewers: Aaron ArmstrongKatie Orr, and Craig Hurst.

**Disclaimer – I was provided a complimentary advance proof of this book by Crossway in exchange for this review.  I am under no obligation to provide a favorable review.

Frank Gantz

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A Christian who is a member of FirstBoynton in Boynton Beach, FL. A husband, father & grandfather.

3 responses to Book Review: Die Young by Hayley and Michael DiMarco

  1. Frank, I was also waiting to see how the word “young” was to be played out in the book but it never was.

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