I was first drawn to this book by the recommendation of Jefferson Bethke, one of my favorite YouTubers. When he referenced it in one of his teaching videos last year, I knew I wanted to read it. When I finally sat down to read it, I couldn’t put it down. It only took me three days to finish. I was encouraged, inspired, and challenged by this powerful message, for I found it to be such a fresh approach and understanding of the concepts of pain and suffering than is usually taken in Christian books. As I reflect on the trials of my life, most specifically when I’ve lost loved ones, I found that much of what Lusko said gave better articulation to thoughts I’d already had during these trials. Because of the weight of the themes and certain events described in this book, I would recommend reading this book to adults and teens only. It’s probably not for someone much younger than 12. If you have any questions about it, just ask ~ Bethel
Pain. Most of us think of this as an ugly word with bad connotations. No matter what type of pain (physical, emotional, spiritual, etc.), we will do anything we can to avoid it. Then, when the situation comes that we are forced to face pain, we have a difficult time coping. Many will use their pain as an excuse to shut others out, especially God. Some allow the pain to consume their hearts and lives until they lose themselves to it. But no matter what type of pain or how severe it is, most everyone will face some sort of pain. The real question is how we will respond to it. The way that most people respond often leaves them in worst shape than when they started. It makes us look at the pain and suffering and ask “How am I supposed to face unbearable pain? Is there a better way to deal with it?”
In his first book, Through the Eyes of a Lion, author Levi Lusko takes us on a powerful personal journey, and invites you to glean from the lessons he learned through his own personal tragedy – losing his 5 year old daughter Lenya to an asthma attack 5 days before Christmas in 2012. But he goes beyond just recounting the story of that horrible night or reliving the painful days that followed. He chose to use the difficulties and the pain as an opportunity to draw closer to God and find incredible power through his pain. Most people would not think of pain as having a positive power, but that is the choice Lusko has made. He refers to it as “running toward the roar.” He also helps give us a perspective that is anchored in hope, and is more focused on the things of eternity, not the problems of this world. These approaches to the concepts of pain and suffering are fresh and much needed, as everyone will inevitably face suffering at some point in their lifetime, probably several things throughout their lives.
The honesty and vulnerability with which Lusko writes makes this one the best books I’ve read, especially on this particular subject. This book can be a powerful tool, whether you are currently facing a trial in your life, or if you want to better prepare yourself for when you do. I know that you will find inspiration and encouragement in this book if you take the opportunity to read it, so get your hands on a copy today!