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Grace and Divorce: God's Healing Gift to Those Whose Marriages Fall Short Hardcover – December 8, 2004


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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Carter, psychotherapist and author of more than 20 books, addresses one of the diciest subjects in the evangelical world: divorce. Christians, he says, ought not to treat divorcées as second-class citizens, intrusively question them about the "biblical grounds" for their divorce or pretend they have nothing left to offer their church or friends (all of which happen regularly, according to examples Carter cites from his counseling experience). Exactly how Christians should respond is less clear, aside from a general directive to recognize that we all fail to fully live up to Christian standards and thus need to respond with grace. Carter directs that divorcés or those headed toward divorce—even when clearly abusing their new-found freedom—should not be confronted until after they have been allowed to share in depth their pain and perspective, whether this takes "ten minutes... or ten months." He cautions strongly against the urge to guide someone in how they should proceed, believing that this kind of "imperative thinking" displays self-centeredness and a desire for control. While the book is a thoughtful approach to a difficult topic, many readers will feel that Carter is so grace-focused as to be off-balance. Serious readers looking for advice on how to best approach friends on the subject will be perplexed by the lack of specific instruction.
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Review

Carter, psychotherapist and author of more than 20 books, addresses one of the diciest subjects in the evangelical world: divorce. Christians, he says, ought not to treat divorcées as second-class citizens, intrusively question them about the "biblical grounds" for their divorce or pretend they have nothing left to offer their church or friends (all of which happen regularly, according to examples Carter cites from his counseling experience). Exactly how Christians should respond is less clear, aside from a general directive to recognize that we all fail to fully live up to Christian standards and thus need to respond with grace. Carter directs that divorcés or those headed toward divorce--even when clearly abusing their new-found freedom--should not be confronted until after they have been allowed to share in depth their pain and perspective, whether this takes "ten minutes... or ten months." He cautions strongly against the urge to guide someone in how they should proceed, believing that this kind of "imperative thinking" displays self-centeredness and a desire for control. While the book is a thoughtful approach to a difficult topic, many readers will feel that Carter is so grace-focused as to be off-balance. Serious readers looking for advice on how to best approach friends on the subject will be perplexed by the lack of specific instruction. (Dec.) (Publishers Weekly, November 8, 2004)
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Jossey-Bass; 1 edition (December 8, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0787975818
  • ISBN-13: 978-0787975814
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,093,657 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dr. Les Carter is associated with the Minirth Clinic Psychiatric and Counseling Center in Richardson, Texas. He is specially trained in the treatment of emotional adjustments and relationship problems. He is the author or coauthor of several books, including the bestselling The Anger Workbook.

Customer Reviews

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See all 13 customer reviews
This book makes so much sense of my struggle.
BeckyD
This book is an AMAZING book about God's Grace and how we can and should demonstrate it to those around us.
Cool Daddy
This book was amazing and I would recommend it to anyone going through a divorce.
Rachel V. pijlman

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on July 19, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This book helped me to resolve questions and fears regarding the shame and guilt of divorce in my life. Coming from a Christian background and having a desire to do the right thing, even after four years of recovery, this was not fully resolved with me, especially in the area of remarriage. Les is able to explain God's grace and where divorce fits in there, in a way I never fully understood before.

This is a great resource of understanding and empathy for anyone who has not experienced divorce in dealing with anyone who has. This book sheds light on this often avoided subject and often neglected action in Christian churches today. This book is a MUST HAVE for Christian lay ministry and pastors.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Cindy Franklin on August 25, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Dr. Carter provides great encouragement for those of us that are divorced by reminding us that God's grace in there for us, too - just like it is everyone else. Sometimes, in the midst of the turmoil, it is hard to remember that and, unfortunately, it is ofter hard for others to remember that about the divorced folks as well. This is a great book to encourage the divorced and would also be a great book for a pastoral staff member to read.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By discotae on December 20, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I ordered this book for my friend who's going through a tough divorce. She said that the book is a really great read and comforting.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mark W. Schulz on December 9, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I discovered this title on-line and recommended it sight unseen to a person trying to help a fractured family. The report back from this family friend is that the book made the rounds of family members and resulted in a significant reduction in the "anger level" in that family system. Both the separated spouses and their children have been able to treat each other with a degree of grace (including tenderness and respect) that wasn't there before. This does not mean immediate relational healing, but steps toward treating each other in a more Christ-like way. Needless to say, I will be recommending this book to others.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Carly on August 29, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This book was so helpful in my divorce recovery process. There was no way that I wanted to forgive my spouse for the pain he caused our family. But I knew that forgiveness was important for me to heal.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As a former pastor, and someone who hasn't had an easy marriage myself, the church's response to divorce was always a struggle for me. This book makes so much sense of my struggle. Grace should always be our default setting, Les Carter has an uncanny ability to make sense of really hard subjects. I've read several of his books and they've been life-changing. (Enough About You, Let's Talk About Me and The Anger Workbook specifically)
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By Cool Daddy on December 5, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I read this book to help me deal with my marital separation and found the book to be very uplifting. The best part about this book though is NOT necessarily the marital aspect. This book is an AMAZING book about God's Grace and how we can and should demonstrate it to those around us. I recommend this book as a book about Grace alone regardless of the status of your relationship. Truly a must read!
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