I’m slightly behind the curve when it comes to reading heavily recommended and popular books. That was the case with Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand. But when I finally did get a chance to read it, boy, was I ever happy that I didn’t pass it by on the way to another story on my list.
Without giving away too much of the story to the few of you who may not have read it or have seen the movie, its about a World War II bombardier named Louie Zamperini who is taken prisoner by the Japanese. It’s a great read and I highly recommend it. It’s not a Catholic book, but there is a faith element in it.
As I was reading, there was quite a few times where I stopped in shock or awe at what some of the men in the war went through. How did they survive such dire circumstances? How did they NOT break? The story doesn’t go through all of that, but it does focus on the survival of Louie.
There were a few lines in particular that nearly jumped off the page for me. I’ll highlight just one. After Louie returns from the war, he’s struggling, as are his fellow POW friends and other veterans. The author notes: “There was no one right way to peace; every man had to find his own path, according to his own history.” (Page 349.)
I thought that was such a profound statement, especially as we all go through this period of Lent. Some may be suffering through hardships, and might be at breaking points for different reasons—it’s not for us to judge those reasons or hardships—everyone has a history that they are trying to fight through find their peace.
Lent is the perfect time to find that path to peace. Catholics can connect their suffering to Jesus’ as He makes his way to the Cross.