Book Review: ‘Juggling Life’ by Samuel Chawana, triumph against all odds

Book Review: ‘Juggling Life’ by Samuel Chawana, triumph against all odds

Samuel Chawana is a church leader, entrepreneur, two-time author and musician; all of this accomplished by the age of twenty-one. His debut book ‘Juggling Life: Lessons from a young, entrepreneur, counsellor & church leader’ is a revealing read that tells the story of Chawana’s life and the lessons he has learned on his journey to recognition and success.

The book consists of sixteen chapters and reads to a little under one-hundred and fifty pages. It is worth noting however that Chawana is still in his twenties and sceptics may question what someone of a young age might be able to teach the world.

Though his tender age, Chawana has experienced some of the most turbulent circumstances that human beings could experience in their lifetime. At the young age of sixteen after family troubles, Chawana was elected to lead his church and from then onwards he has taken on many duties including caring for the less privilege, betrayal, addiction and suicidal thoughts. Due the author’s breath-taking honesty and bravery, he gives readers a look into the life of a young pastor, withholding nothing.

Born to a humble family in Kwekwe, Chawana is the only son to his family and spent most of his formative years in Kwekwe. He had an early introduction into leadership when he was appointed a prefect in primary school where he learned a profound lesson, “we must never play with or show off the power given to us.” The early chapters of the book mostly chronicle his childhood and early teens and the many experiences that he faced that have shaped the person he is today, for instance the great admiration and reverence that the author carries for his late grandfather’ eloquence and intelligence.

Picture1 Book Review: ‘Juggling Life’ by Samuel Chawana, triumph against all odds

The book also includes many more mentors and associates that he came across who were instrumental to his learning and life journey. The author reveals in details the hardships he has faced when he had to run a church, fend for himself while still a minor and depression. One of the books’ most poignant chapters is ‘Dealing with addiction’ in which a small chance encounter led him down years of addiction and shame until finally overcoming his vices. As Chawana writes in the chapter ‘Bachelorhood’, “No matter how dirty or messed up someone’s past might be, ahead of him/her is a blank white page without even the smallest spot.” He details how he overcame his addiction and encourages readers to free themselves from their own addictions.

We are also given a glimpse into the life of clergymen as he claims he often feels lonely as a pastor because he is often sought after to help others. The book also discusses some of the issues his congregants have faced and how they overcame these challenges. Chawana also tackles relationships and their importance in chapters “Precious Associates” and “Understanding Relationships”. He teaches his readers how to distinguish relationships, how to manage them and how to capitalize on them. He also speaks on the start of his businesses, the lessons drawn from their respective success and failure. Indeed, his life has been a juggling act and one of perseverance.

Readers are also encouraged to take ownership of their lives as he states “It is your duty to create an environment and atmosphere you enjoy.” Readers can find inspiration in the pages of this book from a young person who has boldly told his story for others to find inspiration and perhaps even counsel in the pages.

Untimely, “Juggling Life” is a revealing book of a young person whose faith and persevere have earned him valuable life lessons and a well of knowledge that he now shares with readers around the world. The book’s language was easy and made for a quick read. The lessons that Chawana shares are useful to people of all generations as they are universal. 

Kudzai Mhangwa

Kudzai Mhangwa is a writer, actor and musician. He writes poetry, plays, essays and short stories. His work has been featured on House of Mutapa, Atrebla Magazine, Ka'edi Africa, Poetry Soup and elsewhere.

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