“My story changed beyond all recognition. Everything that was made ugly by pain and anger was turned to beauty by one simple, revolutionary thing—forgiveness.” Medad Birungi was once a boy who begged to die by the side of the road, a teenager angry enough to kill, a man broken and searching, yet today he is a testimony to God’s transforming power. In his life story, Tombstones and Banana Trees: A True Story of Revolutionary Forgiveness, Birungi charts his outrageous journey through suffering, abuse, despair and revenge to unexpected forgiveness and healing.
Birungi grew up with a violent father in the war-torn country of Uganda in the 1960’s. His childhood was scarred by extreme poverty, cruel suffering and unbearable sorrow that few of us can even imagine. Yet from that trauma came the lessons that we can all appreciate: the impoverishment of life without Christ, the redemption of the cross and the revolutionary power of forgiveness. His story deals in nothing less than pure, God-given transformation. Tombstones and Banana Trees has the dual quality of being both uniquely individual yet universally relevant, holding together the grandest of themes and the most intimate of testimonies. Birungi’s life is so comprehensively renewed that any reader sharing in his journey will feel the impact. Trough his story of healing, Birungi calls readers to find healing for their own emotional scars.
To describe this book in one word, the word would be "Powerful". If we could all take to heart, the message of revolutionary forgiveness that the author is relating through his own personal story, it would change the world. I won't lie, the parts of his childhood that were filled with emotional and physical abuse are at times hard to read but the author continually weaves a theme through it that offers hope. He doesn't offer a "pat" solution saying it is easy and instantaneous, he shows how hard forgiveness is, and how it is a daily, moment by moment choice. But he also shows that if we continuously make that choice and move into revolutionary forgiveness, it can allow God to move in the most horrid and unimaginable of situations and bring beauty and change and celebration. I highly recommend this read.
I was given this book free David c. Cook for an honest review. My thoughts and opinions are my own.
You can purchase Tombstones and Banana Trees here.