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Where Is God When It Hurts? [Kindle Edition]

Philip Yancey
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (312 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $5.99
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Sold by: HarperCollins Publishing

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Book Description

If there is a loving God, then why is it that … ?

You’ve heard that question, perhaps asked it yourself. No matter how you complete it, at its root lies the issue of pain.

Does God order our suffering? Does he decree an abusive childhood, orchestrate a jet crash, steer a tornado through a community? Or did he simply wind up the world’s mainspring and now is watching from a distance?

In this Gold Medallion Award–winning book, Philip Yancey reveals a God who is neither capricious nor unconcerned. Using examples from the Bible and from his own experiences, Yancey looks at pain—physical, emotional, and spiritual—and helps us understand why we suffer. Where Is God When It Hurts? will speak to those for whom life sometimes just doesn’t make sense. And it will help equip anyone who wants to reach out to someone in pain but just doesn’t know what to say.


Editorial Reviews

Review

'I know firsthand that pain and paralysis sometimes seem to push away the presence of God. To ask 'Where Is God When It Hurts?' is honest, reasonable even. And thank the Lord, Philip puts our questions into perspective, helping us find out exactly where God really is when we hurt.' -- Joni Eareckson Tada

From the Publisher

Many suffering people want to love God, but cannot see past their tears, says Philip Yancey. They feel hurt and betrayed. Sadly, the church often responds with more confusion than comfort. This current edition of what is perhaps Yancey's best-known book should speak to anyone for whom life sometimes just doesn't make sense. And it should help equip anyone who wants to reach out to someone in pain but just doesn't know what to say.

Product Details

  • File Size: 946 KB
  • Print Length: 288 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Up to 5 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
  • Publisher: Zondervan; Anv edition (February 23, 2010)
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishing
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000SEONA6
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,835 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
155 of 163 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Paradigm Shift May 15, 2000
Format:Paperback
This book is not only about how God views our suffering, and how much we struggle with God in the midst of our suffering (although it does thoroughly discuss those things). The most interesting aspects of this book, in my opinion, were the stories and comments that Yancey makes on how Christians, though mostly good-intentioned, often respond to other people's pain in very unhelpful ways. There is an example of a woman who was very ill and then examples of a few different people who came to visit her and how their different approaches affected her. It shows you how to best try and comfort someone in great pain (although of course there isn't one universally right way to do it). One of Yancey's most interesting observations in this book is that the only cards made for sick people are "get well" cards--and how that shows what society's view is on sickness and how often times people are only considered valuable if they are well. Otherwise, they are considered invalids (as he points out, that word suggests that the person is considered "not valid"). This book should be read by everyone experiencing chronic pain, anyone who experiences any kind of pain, and anyone who ever expects to know anyone who experiences pain. Therefore, everyone should read this book, because pain continues to be a significant part of life.
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89 of 94 people found the following review helpful
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Even if you are not a Christian, and even if you are not facing severe pain, this book is worth reading. It's worth reading because it will give you fascinating insights into the human body. It's worth reading because it will broaden your perspective after reading about people who have faced tremendous pain. And if for no other reason, it's worth reading because Philip Yancey is a great writer. His writing style is pithy, yet never brusque. He skillful balances journalistic fact, personal narrative, and theology in a way that few others can.
If you are struggling with physical or psychological pain, you will find a friend in Yancey. He approaches this topic respectfully, without simplistic answers and tears back a bit of the mystery surrounding the problem of pain in this world. I know I'll never come across a work that can answer all or even most of my questions, but I appreciate an author that will jump in the sticky battle for answers with a sharp eye for truth and a spirit sensitive to God's voice.
The beginning part of this book explores pain from a physical perspective. It touches on time that Yancy spent with Dr. Paul Brand who works with leprosy patients and investigates how pain is useful from a biological perspective. As the book moves on, Yancey's scope widens to address other aspects of pain and suggest some ways that God might be using pain.
However, at no time was I left with that troubling feeling that I sometimes get after someone quotes that verse about God using all things for our good. Yancey allows that it is much more complicated than that, at least from the perspective of this lifetime. Instead Yancey (much like C.S. Lewis) confronts these pat solutions and champions the cause of all of us who struggle to reconcile the seeming paradox of a compassionate God who is Lord over a pain-filled world.
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45 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Practical, honest discussion about human suffering February 6, 1998
Format:Paperback
This is the best book on pain and suffering out in the market (even better than C.S. Lewis's THE PROBLEM OF PAIN). Yancey's first chapter title describes our predicament well enough: 'A problem that won't go away'. This problem is as old as mankind, and in some ways, no one will ever write a better outline of this difficulty than can be found in the book of Job. Yancey's book, though, takes a fresh look at pain itself, and while it cannot answer all questions (no book can), it does give a thoughtful discussion that helps us to comprehend the crucial role of pain in our lives. This book is not an abstract speculative treatise, but a practical and helpful companion as we ask why there is such a thing as pain, is pain a message from God, how do people respond to suffering, how can we cope with pain, and how does religious faith help (or hinder). I give this book my highest recommendation.
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars EXCELLENT! April 28, 2004
Format:Loose Leaf
This is THE most influential book I've ever read dealing with a subject that the religious experts have wrestled with in every age since the dawn of man. How do you deal with pain, suffering, and/or death? Why does God allow it? Why did He invent pain in the first place? These and other related questions are the hardest to answer when our non-christian friends and relatives start asking them, especially when they are suffering a painful devistating illness themselves. I was given this book at 17 years of age by an unknown saint who slipped it into my hospital room when I was going through the difficulties of a kidney transplant. My anger and bitterness toward God would surly have destroyed me had I allowed it to fester by setting this precious book aside. Thank God I didn't. I read it and my faith and love for Christ greatly increased instead of weakening. I have seen too many suffering patients take the angry, bitter road to destruction. Because of my experience with the book, I now give it out to my patients freely when they are faced with devastating pain or life threatening illness(es). I have found this book extremely valuable in opening up a hardened and locked down heart to Christ. The one who suffers can not understand why a loving, merciful creator would allow him or her to go through such suffering, or why He would allow the suffering of a close friend or relative. This book explores the issues head on with an eyes-wide-open approach to why pain exists in the first place and how we should deal with it. It is both scientific and spiritual. In my opinion, no other book short of the Bible has helped my walk with Christ as much!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars I have a really good friend who's wife has stage four cancer
I have a really good friend who's wife has stage four cancer; figuring out how to make sense of this situation is tough as is knowing what to tell someone who is actually living... Read more
Published 11 hours ago by r.m.
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding!!!
Fantastic book. The author is a tremendous writer very easy to read and informative. This book is a must read for all Christians.
Published 23 days ago by Mark Vann
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
good book
Published 29 days ago by Amazonian
5.0 out of 5 stars this book by Philip Yancey is amazing in the clarity and depth of the...
this book by Philip Yancey is amazing in the clarity and depth of the writing. Human pain and suffering looked at from a scriptural perspective especially cannot be viewed through... Read more
Published 1 month ago by donna boeving
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A
Published 1 month ago by deanna j stokes
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible book to read when you are in the pits of despair
An incredible resource when you face your incredible trials in life. It tackles the most common questions in a very Biblical way so that people feel closure to questions such... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good buy and prompt delivery. Thank you!
Published 1 month ago by Angel TORRES PILGRIM
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Opens up arguments i had never considered and answers that are worth thinking about.
Published 2 months ago by Kevin
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Found this very inspiring. The stories and applications Re
Very good
Published 2 months ago by Lucy Sweeney
4.0 out of 5 stars This is a book written by a person who thinks ...
This is a book written by a person who thinks and writes about his Christain faith, suffering and evil in the world with his feet planted firmly on the ground. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Newt
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More About the Author

I worked for 10 years as an Editor and then Publisher for Campus Life magazine. There I learned journalistic skills (there's no tougher audience than teenagers), but every year it seemed I wrote fewer and fewer words. In 1980 my wife Janet and I moved to downtown Chicago where I began a career as a freelance writer. (She has worked as a social worker and hospice chaplain--which gives me plenty of material to write about!) We lived there until 1992, when we moved to the foothills of Colorado. I've written around 20 books, most of them still in print, thankfully. Three of them I coauthored with Dr. Paul Brand, who influenced me more than any single person. My own favorites are "Soul Survivor" and "Reaching for the Invisible God" because both of them forced me to dig deep and get personal. I'm a pilgrim, still "in recovery" from a bad church upbringing, searching for a faith that makes its followers larger and not smaller. I feel overwhelming gratitude that I can make a living writing about the questions that interest me.

Please visit my website at www.philipyancey.com for more information, essays, events, travel notes, and a blog.

There is also an official Facebook page at: http://www.facebook.com/PhilipYancey?v=wall

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