By: J. Bronson Haley
Publisher: WestBow Press
Publication Date: February 2011
Reviewed by: Amy Lignor
Review Date: May 14, 2013
Understanding the fact that there’s a ‘friend’ out there who will always be with you no matter how far you’ve fallen or how many sins you’ve committed, is a beautiful reality. At the same there are many in this world who are lost, who have succumbed to alcohol, drugs, anger, fate - and simply found themselves with nothing; living a life of loneliness that they couldn’t get out of.
This story is a true tale offered by a man who saw the bottom of life and ended up finding the one person who could help him through the pain and pull himself up - out of the nightmare he was living. This was not only an intriguing story about his life and the life lessons learned, but also a beautiful tribute to the Son who is forever trying to help us not lose our way.
Mr. Haley tells it like it is. The truthful account of his life in many different locations, brings Shreveport, Louisiana to the forefront. It is in this gritty town that readers are taken inside the cruel, frightening, sometimes vicious world of a street-fighter. Mr. Haley was one of those people who you would cross to the other side of the street to avoid, simply because a part of you was scared to death of what he would do if you were on his bad side. The cold bars on the jail cell clanged at times, and there were even moments when Mr. Hawley had no idea how he got arrested in the first place. This is a man who lived a life wrapped around utilizing and relying on addictions in order to find some kind of happiness in the haze.
Even when you find yourself angry at this man; even when you find his manners distasteful, there is always a part of you that feels for him. Saying he had a ‘tough childhood’ is an understatement; but it was why he created the mask he constantly wore to protect himself from the world. Though his face may have worn a sneer and his fists may have pounded on flesh, there was a soul inside screaming for help.
Failure happens. But instead of giving up, instead of choosing to crawl through life, Mr. Haley found a way to stand by finding Jesus. I know there are still those out there who roll their eyes at this concept, but Jesus is a true friend who offers us the power to stand against all the sin and violence that make headlines each and every day.
This author offers wisdom, a look at the combination of true struggle and redemption, and the common sense understanding that no one is perfect and Jesus doesn’t expect us to be. The locations are incredibly vivid, ranging from the streets of Louisiana to the stunning landscape of Colorado to Mexico and beyond. It is odd to say this about a nonfiction piece, but the thrills and adventure are certainly there. This is a breath of fresh air; and for some, it may just be the shot of faith they need in order to put their life back on track.
Quill says: From the depths of pain to the apex of freedom, this book hits on all cylinders and is priceless!