Monday, June 27, 2011

Repost: Hearing Jesus Speak into Your Sorrow

I'm going to be gone this week and didn't manage to get this week's book read and its review written before I left. So I'm posting my review of a book I reviewed some time ago that I highly recommend. Enjoy!

Hearing Jesus Speak into Your Sorrow

Hearing Jesus Speak into Your Sorrow
by Nancy Guthrie

Hardback: 166 pages
Publisher: Tyndale Publishers
First Released: 2009

Source: copy from the publisher for a blog tour

Description from Book Cover:
In this paradigm-shifting book, Nancy Guthrie gently invites readers to lean in along with her to hear Jesus speak understanding and insight into the lingering questions we all have about the hurts of life: What was God’s involvement in this, and why did he let it happen? Why hasn’t God answered my prayers for a miracle? Can I expect God to protect me? Does God even care?

According to Nancy, these questions can either take us far from God or cause us to press into him more deeply as we search for and find the answers in His Word. It is as we hear Jesus speak into our confusion that we come to clarity about the promises of the gospel we may have misapplied and the purposes of God we may have misunderstood.

In Hearing Jesus Speak into Your Sorrow, Nancy shares the answers she has found as she has heard Jesus speaking promises ("My grace is all you need"), imperatives ("Be healed!"), and prayers ("Thy will be done") into the sorrow in her life.

Book Review:
Hearing Jesus Speak into Your Sorrow is a Christian nonfiction book that answers the questions asked by Christians who have experienced deep sorrow and wonder why God allowed it. This book deepens the reader's understanding of the Bible and our view of God. It doesn't give easy, pat answers but digs deeper in search of truth and never denies your pain. This book focuses on Bible scripture and on Christ, and the insights she points out will bring comfort and healing to your deep sorrows.

This book was written by someone who knows deep sorrow (through the death of two children), but the book is for anyone who has ever struggled with disappointment, heart-break, or hurt of any sort. I'd highly recommend this book to anyone.

Excepts from the Introduction:
It is found in John 6, where John records that many of Jesus’ followers had turned away and deserted him because some of his teachings were so hard for them to swallow. They were offended by what Jesus said, so they simply walked away from him. He didn’t meet their immediate expectations, and he seemed to ask of them more than they wanted to give. They were far more interested in what they could get from Jesus than in getting more of Jesus. And when Jesus made it clear that what he wanted to give them was more of himself, they simply weren’t interested any longer. At that point, as the throngs that had been following him began to slip away, Jesus turned to his twelve disciples and asked, “Are you also going to leave?”

I try to imagine the drama and emotion of that moment as Jesus said out loud what they were probably all thinking to themselves and as he called those closest to him to a decision. Simon Peter spoke up for the group, saying to Jesus, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words that give eternal life” (verse 68).

As my pastor read the Scripture, I could relate to those in the story who found some of Jesus’ words difficult to understand and accept, and simply walked away. Perhaps you can too, as you have struggled to reconcile your understanding of what you’ve read about in the Bible, and your expectations of how God cares for those he loves, with your own difficult reality.


Jesus said that we should listen closely to his words. “Pay close attention to what you hear,” he said. “The closer you listen, the more understanding you will be given—and you will receive even more. To those who listen to my teaching, more understanding will be given. But for those who are not listening, even what little understanding they have will be taken away from them” (Mark 4:24-25).

And so I have to ask you, Do you want to listen closely to Jesus so that he will give you more understanding? Will you open your heart and mind to hear him speak into your sorrow? The words written on the pages of your Bible are not just detached religious dialogue that fails to intersect with your difficult reality. They are God’s personal message to you.

Read the full introduction.

No comments: