This week the blog is sponsored by christianaudio.com, and this post is written by Carissa Arend.
Suffering is an inevitable part of the Christian life, and we need reminders of gospel hope in everyday difficulties as well as in life-shattering trials. The following audiobooks offer noteworthy and unique perspectives on suffering.
Jerry Bridges grapples with questions of God’s sovereignty, love, and power in the midst of pain. He gives insight into the nature of trust when hard circumstances defy explanation.
“Trust is not a passive state of mind. It is a vigorous act of the soul by which we choose to lay hold on the promises of God and cling to them despite the adversity that at times seeks to overwhelms us.”
A Grief Observed is a poignant glimpse into C.S. Lewis’s loss of his wife to cancer. As he wrestles with psalmic sadness, Lewis uses vivid word pictures to describe the nature of faith, grief, and love.
“God has not been trying an experiment on my faith or love in order to find out their quality. He knew it already. It was I who didn’t. In this trial He makes us occupy the dock, the witness box, and the bench all at once. He always knew that my temple was a house of cards. His only way of making me realize the fact was to knock it down.”
Dealing with daily chronic pain, Dave Furman offers a hopeful picture of God’s purpose in trials––against a dark backdrop of affliction. He writes with clarity about depression, weakness, and God’s grace.
“When you have heaven in view, you don’t need a more comfortable and easier ‘now’ to bring you joy. What you need is a forever to reshape your here and now. Living in light of eternity doesn’t remove our pain, but it allows us to have hope in our moments of pain.”
Joni Eareckson Tada provides wise perspective on healing and hope through the lens of her experience as a quadriplegic. As she narrates her book, Tada communicates compelling truths about God’s character with grit and grace.
“The truth is, in this world it’s a 100 percent guarantee that we will suffer. But at the same time, Jesus Christ is 100 percent certain to meet us, encourage us, comfort us, grace us with strength and perseverance, and yes, even restore joy in our lives. Your Savior is 100 percent certain to be with you through every challenge.”
The Bible is truly the most extensive resource on enduring trials. From raw lament to triumphant joy, Scripture paints a nuanced portrait of Christian living and eternal hope in suffering.
Noteworthy verse (among many):
“And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.” –1 Peter 5:10
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