This book is far more than just a book. It is an allegory, a parable, an autobiography, and life lessons, all rolled into one tale of triumph. One might ask how this can be, as it is filled with sufferings and torments and sorrows, the likes of which have caused many a soul to give up the ghost and consign them to lives devoid of comfort or freedom or peace.
The answer to that question lies in this book itself. Interwoven throughout each page is a golden thread of victory, weaved amongst the tapestry of my life and fashioned in the form of a cup. A cup of suffering.
This cup had been placed in my tiny fists at birth. And though I had not asked at the time to be the recipient of such a reward, I have come to the soul-changing conclusion that the story of my life, narrated with the assistance of suffering itself, has revealed that this cup of suffering had truly been the victor’s cup all along.
One would be excused for asking yet another question and that inquiry might simply be, “Who are you to tell this story when countless people have suffered since the dawning of time and have grappled with the seemingly unanswerable questions posed by the notion of suffering itself?”
The answer to that question lies within the vow I had made. I told God that I was willing to suffer so that others would not have to. And my life of suffering has been His response and gratitude to such a willing vessel (and that vessel was me), so that many others would be freed and even more would benefit without having to suffer themselves the various hells and torments that have hallmarked my own life.
Another reason I was “chosen” to write this story was because I was willing to tell it without concealment or embellishment. As the result of enumerable and unstoppable circumstances of life, within me was forged one who is unafraid to speak of things that most are wary of sharing or revealing for fear of ridicule or shame or rebuke. I speak aloud the very things that others are feeling but would dare not admit, even to themselves, because of the possible threat of rejection and censure. And I share without fanfare or apology the many vulnerabilities and frailties I have fallen prey to for far too many years of my life.
For it is acknowledgement that gives birth to revelation and revelation gives rise to power. And with power comes freedom.
I have used an incredible amount of artistic creativity in the writing of this book. My life story has been embellished with imagery and sometimes allegory so that you can fully appreciate the journey wherewith this life of suffering has taken me.
In the allegory portions, know that these things are indeed true. True in reality, yet using the imagination so that you, too, will feel what I felt, go where I went, and experience my life as I have known it.
Within each chapter, you will find life lessons. Read each and apply them to your own life. Every life has its own lesson to teach and we are all enriched and encouraged as we remember that, as one man, we have all endured, succumbed, and drank deeply from the cup of suffering. Yet we keep right on fighting as we each yearn for that day when never again will we have to drink from suffering’s cup.