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When Life Is Hard Paperback – January 1, 2010


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When Life Is Hard + Lord, Change My Attitude: Before It's Too Late + Always True: God's 5 Promises When Life Is Hard
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 204 pages
  • Publisher: Moody Publishers; 1st edition (January 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 080245870X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802458704
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (70 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #62,264 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

JAMES MACDONALD is the founding and senior pastor of Harvest Bible Chapel in Rolling Meadows, Illinois. Pastor MacDonald has written many books, including Lord, Change My Attitude, When Life is Hard, and Gripped by the Greatness of God. Pastor MacDonald's teaching can be heard on Walk in the Word, a daily radio program heard on outlets across North America. Pastor MacDonald and his wife, Kathy, have three children and reside in the northwest suburbs of Chicago.

Customer Reviews

Very well written and scriptural.
jeff and Kathy
This book will help others not blame God for their trials but rather see Him as one to lean on and trust.
Kevin D. Cullins
I read this book when I was going through a difficult time and I'm very glad I did.
jesusbookgirl

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

67 of 68 people found the following review helpful By Nelson Johnsrud on February 12, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have to disagree with the earlier review. As someone who is still emerging from one of the darkest hours of my life, I have to say that I found the "When Life is Hard" book and podcast series extremely helpful in shoring up my spiritual foundation again after a devastating loss. Last year in February my daughter (age 23) was admitted for "minor" surgery to drain an infected mass on her bladder. During the procedure a vein to her leg was cut, and a progression of events that followed resulted in her death that evening. In a few short hours she went from a healthy young woman with a minor medical issue to a tragic death due to a surgeon's mistake. I have struggled with this harder than anything I have ever had to deal with. Mr. Macdonald's book is spot-on for anyone who is facing a true life trial. Hebrews chapter 12 has been a constant comfort to me, and I was glad to see Mr. Macdonald expand on that theme. I highly recommend this book to anyone facing a hard trial.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Michael Taylor TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 11, 2010
Format: Paperback
"When Life Is Hard" by James MacDonald is a great and encouraging read for the Christian who is going through some kind of trial (relational, health, career, etc.).

Among the points covered include:

1. 3 things to remember when in a trial.
2. One of the fruits of genuine believers is that you endure hardships.
3. 2 good benefits of trials.
4. 4 actions to take when in a trial.
5. 4 ways to respond to a trial.
6. When in a trial, be careful of discouragement, dislocation, and bitterness.
7. 5 things to consider when going through a trial.
8. The devil wants to use our trial to paralyze us while God wants to use the trial for our own good.
9. 2 things to do when you are living with your "thorn".

MacDonald pulls no punches: trials are not necessarily fun to endure and they are sure to come to the Christian. However, with God's grace, you will endure and glorify God in the process.

Highly recommended.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Robert W. Kellemen on August 1, 2010
Format: Paperback
Pastor MacDonald begins at the beginning--what are trials and why does God allow them? His answer is foundational and scriptural: trials are painful circumstances allowed by God to change my conduct and my character. Exegeting Hebrews 12:5-11, MacDonald demonstrates that trials are God's parental perfecting love. The Lord disciplines the one He loves. Right from the start, readers learn the lesson that in trials God is not getting back at them, He is getting them back to Himself.

In chapter two, MacDonald wisely encourages his readers to candidly ask the "Why?" question. He also challenges readers to be prepared to accept God's answer, using James 1:2-8 as his text. That answer is the core of the book--God allows trials to deepen our faith and transform our character. MacDonald personalizes this by asking readers to ask God, "Why has this come into my life now? What do you want to teach me?"

Throughout chapters three, four, and five, MacDonald urges readers to reject the "self-help Jesus" who "came to build your self-esteem and maximize your human potential by Friday." Some readers, accustomed to this Western worldview of Christ may be taken aback and may wonder, "Where's the empathy in When Life Is Hard?" The empathy comes in the personal illustrations of pain and in the obvious passion for people in pain. However, MacDonald doesn't want to leave people simply with a written hug. He wants to teach people what the Bible says to do after the hug.

Believing that God's Word is sufficient for all life issues, Pastor James shares a myriad of practical principles drawn directly from Scripture. These are not trite behavioralistic "to do steps." Instead, they are core heart issues played out in our relationships with God and others.
Read more ›
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on February 13, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book has kept me reading it because of its easy style of writing while at the same time it provides very clear teachings about trials in life. It's one I have marked up as I have read it and will work through it a second time.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By JRay VINE VOICE on August 21, 2010
Format: Paperback
I have favored Phillip Yanceys books on hardship and in answering the questions of trials and hardship in this world. I liked reading James MacDonalds book. He doesnt pull any punches, but is very encouraging to the reader. He is bibically sound and he does a great job explaining trials. What I did like most about this book was the explanation differing trials vs. consequences. He did a great job explaining the difference between the two, the importance knowing which one we are experiencing, and the difference working your way through each one.

This book is very encouraging, but this book isnt about finding the easy fuzzys in trials. You will be pushed and questioned. The verses are very relevant. This book doesnt offer any easy solutions, but will help you to seek God during your trials.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Kevin D. Cullins on April 17, 2011
Format: Paperback
James MacDonald provided a loving but realistic truth about life. I have no doubt that he will help others by sharing his own personal stuggles. His use of scripture was to the point and makes getting from one day to the next very practical. I have mentioned this book to others who either have purchased or will be purchasing it based on what I have shared wit them.

This book will help others not blame God for their trials but rather see Him as one to lean on and trust. The words James MacDonald shared will help anyone regardless of what they may be going through.
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More About the Author

JAMES MACDONALD is founding pastor of Harvest Bible Chapel, a suburban Chicago church composed of many new Christians that has grown to more than 6,000 worshipers in its fourteen-year history. He has spoken extensively at retreats and Bible conferences and is the author of three other books, as well as articles in noted Christian magazines. He can be heard daily through the half-hour radio broadcast, Walk in the Word, which is aired on more than 500 stations around the country. A new one-minute feature with James, called Listen Up, is now in syndication and is heard on more than 1,000 stations nationwide.

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