Have a Little Faith by Mitch Albom: Book Review


‘ “Dear Friends. I’m dying.

“Don’t be upset. I began to die on July 6, 1917. That’s the day I was born, and, in council with what our psalmist says, ‘We who are born, are born to die’

“Now, I heard a little joke that deals with this. A minister was visiting a country church, and he began his sermon with a stirring reminder:

” ‘ Everyone in this parish is going to die!’

“The minister looked around. He noticed a man in the front pew, smiling broadly.

” ‘Why are you so amused?’ he asked.

” ‘ I’m not from this parish’, the man said. ‘I’m just visiting my sister for the weekend.’ ”

(Albom 2009)

——————————————————-

Why do good things happen to bad people?

If there was a God,why do bad things happen to good people?

Why does God allow war?

How can you forgive?

Where can I find peace?

For those of us who have searched for these answers, you have to read this book. This book may be about faith, religion, love and even death but it is also about answers.

Even before the story begins. Even before you finish page one, already you know the ending is not a happy one. However, this does not in any way detract from its power to move you, to give you hope, to rock you from your core. Mitch Albom sprinkles humour effortlessly throughout this book that you forget what the outcome will eventually be. This book is not for Jews, nor Christians, nor Muslims, it is for everyone. To quote from Mitch Albom himself: ‘…while this book is about faith [it is not] a how-to guide for any particular belief. Rather it is written in hope that all faiths can find something universal in this story… in the beginning, there was a question. In the end, the question gets answered. God sings, we hum along, and there are many melodies, but it’s all one song – one same, wonderful, human song.’

That is why you have to read this book.

There is a famous saying that you should never judge a book by its cover. That is very true, but as in Albom’s case you should also never judge a book by its title. My fear is that people when in scanning bookshelves and download lists for their bright shiny Kindles, will pass by this book simply due to the ‘F’ word. Maybe it’s the cynical in me, but the new religion these days is money and success. Even by Albom’s own admission:

‘ …I pretty much walked away from [my faith]. …It was if I’m, honest, apathy. A lack of need. My career as a sportswriter was blossoming , work dominated my days…Who had time? I didn’t need to ask God much, and I figured, as long as I wasn’t hurting anyone, God wasn’t asking much of me either.’

This is what gives Mitch Albom the authority to write this book. The book is a journey for Mitch in as much as it is for the reader. It does not endorse any particular religion and in fact, Albom writes mostly of people who either have no faith or walked away from the faith or the religion they once followed. In my opinion, Have a Little Faith is relevant to those of every denomination and to those with no religious convictions. Albom’s grace in writing about a sometimes ungraceful topic leaves you thirsty for more. As I regretfully neared the end of this book, I was desperate to read on and to finish the story; to hear the eulogy, yet desperate to stop reading, to keep the story open.

This book gives you hope that no matter how bad you are; how many bad things you have done in your life, there is always the opportunity to change; to be better. I have tried searching for negative aspects of this book but have yet to find one. There is a reason Mitch Allbom is a best-selling author and this book is one of them.

Mitch Albom has proven his eloquence and it seems only fitting that I should give him the last word:


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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Ruby slippers
    Jan 16, 2011 @ 20:20:26

    This book sounds really good. I will look out for it. X x

    Reply

  2. grandmac
    Jan 16, 2011 @ 22:42:26

    As usual Mitch Albom has written a stunner. Glad you liked it. I did too. It has some lessons about life (and death) that we all should learn.
    As do all his books.

    Reply

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