Preface and Introduction
Tattoos on the Heart is not a memoir of what happened to Gregory Boyle, but it's the impowering stories and experiences that he went through. Greg says that Disney Land is not the happiest place on Earth, but he said his home was. I think this is so empowering because it describes the love and the great life you can have just from your family. Also, something that stood out to me was that Greg said the poor in Bolivia changed him. This inspires me to want to help the poor and be changed for the good.
Chapter 1: God I Guess
Whenever we need an answer in life, God, I guess can help. This chapter is based on how God is greater than what we can comprehend and he is always here for us. The story that impacted me the most was the story of Scrappy. It's amazing how someone like Scrappy can change their life. He discovered that he was already with God, but all he had to do was try.
Chapter 2: Dis-Grace
This chapter is about how God still comes to us no matter how much we are surrounded by shame and disgrace. My favorite story from chapter 2 is the story of Lula. I love this story because even though his grades were all F's, he was so proud that he had zero absences. It shows me that even through the negativity in life, there can always be something good that comes out of it. It helps me understand that even during my toughest times, God isn't trying to punish me.
Chapter 3: Compassion
I've learned so much more about God from reading this chapter. I learned that compassion is God and that we can't live without Him. The saddest and most inspiring story is of Betito. It was hard to read the part of the story where he was killed. I admire how he was so courageous and he would do whatever he put his mind to.
Chapter 5: Slow Work
You can't just automatically change into someone that God wants you to be. It takes time to become the better half of yourself, you just have to be patient with God's plan. My favorite story was of Leo because Father Greg learned that in order to help a gang member, you have to know how their life is. You can't just try to help them by the ways you know. You have to know what they go through so that you can have new ways to help them become the better person that they want to be.
Chapter 6: Jurisdiction
Once we find the world of abundant love and acceptance, we are in God's jurisdiction. I learned that we have a choice to love one another and that we should all take that choice to better our lives and the lives of others. The hardest story to read was the story of Travieso and Clever. The part of the story where Clever asks if he can donate his blood to Travieso to save his life is so empowering. It describes the relationship that they could of had. I've learned that I need to forgive all of my enemies so that we can have a relationship that could help both of us become better people.
Chapter 7: Gladness
We all have gladness in our lives. We just have to find and reach for it in our hearts. We are very lucky to have God in our life and to be glad that we are here today. My favorite story is of Frankie. It is my favorite story from this chapter because this is when a Father Greg realizes that we are God's joy. It's amazing to hear that you are someone else's joy and that they are thinking of you.