When Life Hits You Hard

As I’ve mentioned in my previous post, this book has been sitting on my currently-reading shelf for almost three months now. I began reading it in September, but I got caught up with other stuff, neglecting it altogether. Then I started reading other series, pushing it further to the bottom of my reading list.

Half-way through the book, it suddenly hit me how this compares to our personal lives. It seemed to me that we subconsciously put other things before what’s truly essential, the way we do towards faith. This book has served as an eye-opener, a medium for coming to understand what’s most significant in life. More often than not, these are the things we tend to overlook because we are too busy to even stop and reflect on our lives on a day-to-day basis. As Kahlil Gibran once said,

No matter how busy a man is, he is never too busy to stop and talk about how busy he is.

Have a Little Faith: The Story of a Last Requestby Mitch Albom Ratings: ★★★★

This is based on a true story which Mitch Albom himself narrated in first person point of view. It is about how a rabbi and long-time friend, Albert Lewis, requested Mitch to deliver his eulogy at his funeral. Mitch was hesitant at first, given the fact that he’s long since gotten involved with any religious activity; if going to the synagogue once a year even contributes to that. Mitch eventually agreed under certain conditions: they have to meet every now and then to talk. Much like a thesis, he needed as much information he could get in order to justify his argument. The two did this for eight years, with Albert filling in every question Mitch throws him.

While Albert Lewis recounts his earlier days as a  Rabbi, Henry Covington reminisced his dark days. Henry was a drug addict, a dealer, and an ex-convict. Like Al, he only had one wife, a son and four daughters, and had even lost a child, but the two differed in the way they had lived their respective lives. It’s amazing how through his sermons, Al has built a community. On the other hand, Henry, who has ignored God’s calling one too many times, faltered at the foot of His mercy when he least expected it.

The thing I admired most about this book is how Albert convinced Mitch that each religion are alike, in one way or another, and that people should learn to respect each other regardless of what or who they believe in. No one is above another in the eyes of God. I liked Al’s simple approach towards true happiness, forgiveness, and marriage. He did live a wonderful life. I could cite a list of my favorite excerpts I had bookmarked and highlighted in this book, but that would be telling. I highly recommend this book, and I’m bestowing it five deserving stars.

Like most of Mitch Albom’s famous works, this was very moving. It’s a light-read that left me feeling heavy-hearted, especially when its story is packed with beautiful learnings on faith, hope, and love.

When life hits you hard, have a little faith.

Years later, I will forget the class, forget the teacher’s name, forget the girl across the room. But I will remember that story.

—Albert Lewis (Have a Little Faith: The Story of a Last Request)

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