Walk to Beautiful {a book review}

 
 Disclosure: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

The latest book I have completed reading is Walk to Beautiful: The Power of Love and a Homeless Kid Who Found the Way, by Jimmy Wayne, with Ken Abraham. 
 
I was looking to review something for me, in lieu of a book for the kids.  Something empowering and uplifting.  As I went through my list of choices, I kept coming back to this title.  I drawn to this autobiography after reading the first sentence under the book description:  "Imagine being thirteen, in a strange city, hundreds of miles away from home, and your mom abandons you at a bus station, driving off into the night with her lover."  That's a powerfully heart breaking statement, right? 
 
I'll be honest and say, before I cemented the deal to read this book, I decided to look up who Jimmy Wayne was.  I didn't know, since I haven't listened to a radio in years.  (my kids complain each time I turn on a stereo.)  Once I looked him up and listened to one song I was speechless.  I immediately remembered him, for his song, Stay Gone and I Love You This Much.  I remember, the times I first heard these songs and how life changing they were to me.
 
After realizing the who the author was, I sealed the deal to read this book.  I was so interested in hearing Jimmy's heartbreaking story, and see how he turned around a bad situation into being a country music star. 

What I got was so much more than just a simple autobiographic story of rags to riches.  What I got was something nothing short of amazingly beautiful. 
 
This book is amazingly eye opening of the trials and heart aches of the foster care children and the system.
 
It is not written like a "woe as me, look what I had to deal with as a child."  In his writing, with the help of co-author Ken Abraham, Jimmy's stories remain factual, and refreshingly very optimistic.  His horrid story is told with kindness and grace, always portraying the people in his life in a most graceful and honest, yet optimistic, manner.
 
Against all odds, Jimmy (in my eyes) remains a very humble, kind hearted, and fiercely loyal man.
 
After more than a decade of abuse, neglect and a period of homelessness, he is taken in by people you'd least expect.  A vulnerable and elderly couple, Russell and Bea Costner.  This book is a true testimony of how significant of an impact you can have in a child's life, if you are just willing to take a chance.  To take a risk.  "I now believed I could do anything, simply because I had a place to live and some loving encouragement."
 
This book is a message of survival and of hope, and the importance of hospitality.  It's a tribute and a testimony of faith, on Russell and Bea's part.
 
Jimmy took his life and turned it around, striving to get awareness out, about foster kids, through his song/storytelling and with his courageous "Meet Me Halfway" campaign, a 1,700 mile walk from Nashville to Phoenix.
 
This story will change you, and it will stay with you long after you put the book down.
 
"Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me."  Matthew 25:40
 
 
 

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