A description of Average Joe tells the purpose of the writing of the book: “In Average Joe, Troy Meeder sets out to dispel the notion that apart from media attention, athletic greatness, scholastic achievement, or corporate power, a man is nothing. As young boys, we dreamed of being pilots, firefighters, doctors and cowboys. What happened? Now, as years have passed, we have kids, a wife, a mortgage, a seemingly dead-end job and a minivan. All of the dreams that once inspired us have evaporated into traffic jams, computer screens, bills and deadlines. Is it enough to be a good husband, an honorable father or a faithful friend?”
Meeder stays true to his purpose by weaving together stories from scripture as well as his own personal experiences to encourage men to not settle for being “average,” but to rise up to the challenge of being the men God is calling them to be. As I read Average Joe, I could hear echoes of John Eldredge’s Wild At Heart as Meeder encouraged men to seek out deeper friendships with other men, to be husbands who love their wives and men who seek adventure in enjoying God’s creation, whether it be on the river, on horseback or just eating a good meal.
One of the strengths of this book is the stories the author tells. He shares his own experiences from college, while fishing and boating, scuba diving and horse back riding. His retelling of these events brings the reader into the experience and you can clearly picture the scene that he describes. Using these stories as a springboard, he makes connections to scriptures that call men to do more than just settle for average.
Another unique characteristic of this writing is the voice of the author. As you read it, you can picture a man who has accumulated a wealth of life experiences, has had ups and downs and has learned from both his success and failures. He comes across as a seasoned veteran of life and refers to some of the changes he has seen from his generation to today.
Average Joe would be a good read for any man and could also be useful for a small group. The end of the book provides discussion questions to help men make application.