Open Your Eyes; Jake Olson and McKay Christensen, PhD
Summary from Amazon.com
“Doctors removed Jake Olson’s left eye at ten months old. When he was twelve, after years of radiation and chemotherapy, the cancer took his right eye as well. That’s when Jake’s story really began.
When ESPN met Jake Olson, he was a twelve-year-old boy who wanted to spend his final weeks of sight with the USC football team. Jake’s story became one of the most recognized pieces in the network’s history, earning an award, instantly viewed by hundreds of thousands of people worldwide. But Jake’s story didn’t end with his final surgery or with ESPN—not by a long shot.
Now sixteen, Jake Olson dreams of becoming the first blind golfer in the PGA. How is such a thing even possible? How does that level of perseverance endure in someone with so many reasons to give up?
In Open Your Eyes, Jake Olson tells more than his story. He reveals the ways of thinking, living, and praying that have kept him and his family triumphant in the face of their tribulations. Told with sincerity and humor in tandem with leadership coach McKay Christensen, Open Your Eyes is not just a heartwarming chronicle of the Olson family’s struggle. Jake’s story is a step-by-step lesson in perseverance and motivation from a young man who knows how to put the past in the past.
From the USC locker room to the fairways of Pebble Beach, Jake Olson will inspire you, your family, and your team with bravery, ability, and faith. It is time to learn from this remarkable young man and open your eyes to a happier life.”
What would you do if you permanently lost your sight? Whether involuntarily or voluntarily – would your life spin down the drain uncontrollably? Would you sink into a deep depression? I think a lot of us would, then again not everyone has that level of faith and belief in “God’s Plan” or “Destiny” as Jake Olson does. While he is not shy about his relationship with Christ, he believes with every ounce of his being that his blindness and the motivation he can bring others was part of his Destiny, that it was his pre-determined path in life to succeed despite being blind – to go after his ultimate goals in life – an education and being the first blind player on the PGA tour – no matter the obstacles. I think there’s a lot that the reader can bring away from this book, the how’s and why’s of letting go of all of your preconceived notions and using the steps outlined to lay-out your path to finding your pre-destined path in life!
As someone who believes wholly without question in fate and destiny I feel that nothing we experience in life, nothing we do, and nowhere we go is an accident, everything, and I mean absolutely everything, is pre-determined by something or someone greater than ourselves. The lessons we need to learn in life, the people we interact with, the jobs we hold, and how we go about each step of the plan is pre-set before we are even born. This path and plan is replayed in each life until we get it right, until our souls are enlightened completely. It is on this level that I am able to closely relate to Jake’s story, and will use the tools outlined in the book, and through his and his family’s insights to each step along the way the reader is able to see the tools applied real-time and use the Olson families’ insights as the stepping stones to their own path.
The only area I was not able to “connect” to the book was in the intro portion – I feel that it could have been better written – the uses of the phrase “God’s Love” and “God’s Plan” are stated, re-worded, and re-stated over and over in the first thirty pages of the book. However, the authors’ seemed to get into their “groove” after the intro portion of the book. Outside of this section of the book I feel that it is a very good concept, and with some work on the intro they could find a way to better connect the reader to the beginning of the book. As someone who reads a lot of books knows that this is where readers are gained and lost, and with the current introduction chapters of this book in its current state may just lose a lot of readers.
**I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review by the agent through bookbloogerlist.com**