Poverty, crime, parental abandonment and drug abuse were the realities of Romal Tune’s childhood, but so was the stalwart and loving presence of his grandmother, who anchored his life when nothing else seemed stable. Using his own story as a starting point, Tune turns to scripture for examples of people who encountered and overcame equally difficult circumstances, extracting lessons of encouragement and hope for young people with similar struggles today. For example, the story of Hagar and Ishmael serves as the context for a conversation on single parents and the challenges their families face. The story of Rahab the prostitute, who was instrumental in the Israelites’ capture of Jericho, leads to a conversation about not letting other people’s labels define one’s self. In every case, a seemingly bad start turns into a strong finish. Tools for reflection and prayer are included in every chapter.
Reviewed by Marie F. Fleming