I finally got to sit down with this incredible book on the life of Louis Zamperini by Laura Hillenbrand called, Unbroken : A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption.
My Dad had recommended this book to me a few years ago, but during that time I was in the midst of my college years and adding another book to the list seemed daunting, especially one this thick. But a few things kept pulling me back to this book...for one, Mr Zamperini is from Torrance. Born and raised on the streets I grew up around, attending Torrance High School and then USC. He's literally our hometown hero and I knew I needed to hear his story. On top of that, the most profound part of Louis whole ordeal is that he became a Christian and lived out his life speaking about forgiveness, redemption, and the grace of God. WOW.
So, when I saw the gripping trailer of Angelina Jolie's take on Louis story, which comes out on Christmas Day - I knew I had to read the book before I ever saw the movie. I read it in two days. I couldn't put it down. Once Hillenbrand began to paint a picture of who Louis was, the olympic runner turned POW enslaved to violent Japanese commanders for years and years...I was captivated by the power of this man's testimony and the true healing power of the love of Jesus Christ.
If you can...get a copy of this book and read it. It's unbelievable, profound, and has God's mercy and amazing redemptive power written all over it.
Here's an expert
"Resting in the shade and the stillness, Louie felt profound peace. When he thought of his history, what resonated with him now was not all he had suffered but the divine love that he believed had intervened to save him. He was not the worthless, broken, forsaken, man that the Bird* had striven to make of him. In a single, silent moment, his rage, his fear, his humiliation and helplessness, had fallen away. That morning, he believed, he was a new creation."
*the Bird was the most cruel of all the Japanese commanders at the POW camps. The men nicknamed him Bird so they could talk about him in code without him hearing. They chose this name because it didnt have any negative connotation to it so they wouldnt be punished for saying it. The Bird picked Louie as his main target because he knew he was an Olympic runner.
watch the trailer here