Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Someone's Son in My Box

Brenda Rhodes' son could be my son. I found myself aching with her as Ronal Paul's story was told. My son is a recovering addict and with each stumble and fall she recounted, I knew how she felt.

Brenda successfully painted the picture of living and loving someone with an addiction. It is not an easy road, but the mountaintop experiences buoy the hope that perhaps "this time" will be the one; this will be the time when they "get it." Then, hope is dashed when a relapse occurs, and the climb out starts again.

I wept as she described her son's last days. I felt her heart breaking, but I also caught her inexhaustible sense of hope. Without hope, living with an addicted loved one is draining. Brenda carefully crafted the hope she found in the Lord and His Word into her story.

The gritty details of Ronal Paul's misbehaviors were tactfully kept private. She gave enough description about what he did to allow the reader insight into their nightmare. I admire how she respected her son's privacy and honored his memory by not divulging every sordid thing he did.

The book will encourage and offer hope to families and friends of loved ones suffering with an addiction or other life-controlling issues. She showed the importance of family and how, even when we don't agree with a family member's behaviors and lifestyle choices, that they are loved and respected. Many times it is the knowledge that the family still cares that sustains an addict through dark and trying times.

The last page was the most poignant to me. Its message is to not judge the homeless, the addict, the prostitute, the person who is different from us...they are someone's son or daughter.

A complimentary review copy was provided.

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