The Fight by Luke Wordley is one of the most powerful, moving excellent books I have read in awhile.
Sam is a boy that is full of hate and anger. His father is dead and his mother is an alcoholic. Sam is always getting in fights and his anger is out of control. Jerry is a boxing trainer and he has demons of his own to overcome. When Sam gets into a fight with some skinheads and Robbie rescues him he takes Sam to his gym where he is a boxer and Jerry his trainer. Jerry, is a believer but when he starts training Sam some of his old emotions, anger, and demons come out and his faith his shaken. Sam and Jerry both think they will find what they really wan t through boxing but the peace, contentment and happiness they seek is not in boxing but in God. Will they come to realize this before it is to late for either one of them?
When I first started to read this book I didn't think I would like it because I know nothing whatsoever about boxing. I just knew it would be a book I would struggle to get through so I could review but boy was I wrong. This book is about so much more than boxing. It is about redemption, forgiveness, finding true peace and love. Sam struggles with his anger and hatred that is turning him into a mean, destructive killer if he doesn't get it under control. His hatred is what drives him and he is never happy. Even though you don't want to, you find your heart going out to him and hoping that he will find a way to control himself and to be happy. Whether you think you would or not you find yourself in Sam's corner willing him to win over his anger and hatred and to find the peace and love he needs and deserves.
Jerry finds himself questioning his faith after he loses control of his temper like old times at one of the boxing matches. He questions whether God really changed him or not and struggles again with his anger and depression. He wants to be the top in the boxing world and wants to achieve this through Sam because he thinks he will be happy and his family will be happier and financially secure. He wants to achieve what he couldn't when he was boxing. He thinks fame and fortune will bring peace and happiness. He puts God on a a back burner. You find yourself, or at least I did, identifying with Jerry in letting his past come back to haunt him and slipping by putting other things before God. This book shows the downfall of doing this but also how God waits on us to find our way back to him and how the Holy Spirit speaks to us and helps guide Jerry, and us, back onto the right path.
I was amazed at all the side stories that added depth to this book like Sam's mothers and her struggle. Her's is a story of desperation and then forgiveness. Also Gloria, Jerry's wife, and her past come into the story to help show God can forgive anything which is what Sam's mother needed to know.
I will now admit that I am so glad I didn't pass this book up thinking it was a guy's book because of the boxing theme. Yes it is about boxing, yes it is a great book to give to the men in your life and yes every woman should not pass it up because it is a beautiful story of redemption, forgiveness, love and finding yourself, along with true peace, happiness and God's unconditional love.
I loved the book and hope that you will give it a shot, you will be glad you did. Make sure you have time to read it because you might not want to put it down and also have Kleenex close by. Another plus to the book is the discussion questions at the end that would be great for book clubs, small groups or families.
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I was given this book for free from Tyndale Publishing for my true and honest review