Have you ever felt like your world was being torn apart? Did you wonder where God was in that mess of life?
Jud proposes that the most important question we can ask at such a time is not Why? But Who? After that comes How?
Jud spends the first part of the book on our expectations of God and life from a biblical perspective. He shows that God is worthy of our trust. God is good and loves us.
He then looks at how to put life back together again. He gives practical suggestions in fighting for joy, showing forgiveness, and reclaiming hope.
No matter how much we want to trust in our own abilities, we must submit our situation to God and let Him take it. We move beyond the why questions to answering who with trust and faith. We must come to the point where we love God for who He is, not what He gives. Jud covers the importance of worship in our trials and surrendering our pain and our questions to God. He then gives some practical ways to face the challenges and move forward, including those in community and in solitude. He also helps us in waiting, in having hope and finding comfort. He relates a number of stories, including that of Job from the Bible.
He reminds us to check our assumptions about God and suffering. Bad assumptions yield wrong conclusions. He has great encouragement and practical ideas for the battle of depression. He also reminds us of the importance of forgiveness.
A good study guide is included that could be used by an individual or a group.
"The security we have in our darkest times comes not only from knowing that God is in control but also from knowing that God loves us." (68)
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
I recently had the chance to read the book Torn by Jud Wilhite through a service at Blogging for Books which offers free books to bloggers in exchange for honest reviews, either positive or negative.
This book is amazing. I honestly don't get overwhelmed by books that often, but when flipping the pages through this book, I found myself either crying, shouting "Oh My God, Yes!" or dog-earing so many pages that it looks like my copy got caught in a shredder.
There is just no way to describe how beautifully compassionate this book is. Some get-better-right-now books scream at you to suck it up and move on and quit complaining... but this book doesn't.
It lovingly validated everything I've ever felt- and never I mean NEVER have I ever heard the definition of someone struggling with depression put as plainly and simply as this:
"Most of those who suffer from depression don't want artificial sedation to forget their troubles. They desire a sense of normalcy, an ability to process their troubles and manage their emotional reactions the same as everyone else does."
This passage literally made me gasp out loud. Because this is how I have felt so much of my life and even today.
This book then goes on to give real advice about what to do when you find yourself fighting for joy every step of the way... basic things things like...
-sharing your struggle... the first (and most important) step
-forcing yourself to think of the things your should, taking note of Philippians 4:8 (whatever is good, pure, noble, right, etc.... think on these things")
-refusing to remain stagnant.... just keep moving!
-learning the power of forgiveness... though it may be the hardest thing you ever do..
This book also includes a chapeter by chapter for you to go through by yourself or with other people, which I always love.
All in all, I haven't found a book like this before, nor have I found one I be willing to recommend as quickly as this one.
Just as I said before I am not usually overwhelmed by books, I also do not typically feel better just for having read one.
I actually received this book (free in order to review for Blogging for Books) months ago but am just now getting a chance to review it due to the fact that I had loaned out my copy to a friend.
Even though I wasn't really in a "torn" season of my life, I could connect so well with the book. About halfway through reading it, a friend shared with me that her cancer had come back... for the 6th or 7th time in the last 5 years. She truly was torn asking why feeling like her life was in pieces. I knew she needed to read the book... now. She read the entire thing in one day and started reading it again. She couldn't stop talking about the book and the comfort it gave her. After years of battling this and the many ways God has spoken to her, this book was what she needed in this moment.
I've since finished reading the book and I too would recommend it to anyone. As a professional church worker, I plan to always keep a copy in my office to hand out when necessary. What a great book. Thank you Jud for your witness and care in the tough times of life.
Jud Wilhite is an author, speaker and senior pastor of Central Christian Church in Las Vegas. Jud graduated from Dallas Christian College and holds a master's degree from Lincoln Seminary. Jud co-founded People of the Second Chance which is a blog and a movement of people championing grace and love in our culture. Jud is an espresso fanatic and loves playing the guitar.
I got his latest book "Torn - Trusting God When Life Leaves You in Pieces." from his publisher Multnomah Books, so that I could write a review for my blog; and I think the title speaks for itself - this book is about trust.
Wilhite writes in a very open and very easy to read voice. I think he does a good job explaining that all Christians suffer at times, sure it's not what we expect, but we learn to trust God though it all. This isn't an easy thing for believers. I mean, how do you "trust" God when it seems "he" is the one beating you up? Wilhite dives into the misnomer that being a Christian means your life is going to be easy and free of pain.
Wilhite breaks the subject in half - trusting God and then putting the pieces back together, and for its size and subject matter, he does a great job getting you the basics. That' what this book is, a refresher, a reminder, a devotional on hurting and pain. This isn't a biblical treatise or even the "why" to the issue. After all, how would the author talk about "why" anyway? Can any of us truly answer the sovereignty of God question? Doubtful. Wilhite moves past "why" to address the matter of "who" - who is God? And moreover, "who is God at this moment?" We trust God when things are going great - we should trust him even more when we feel torn.
I think this book would make a great gift for pastors who are looking to offer key members a shoulder or a catalyst towards being put back together again. This book is for anyone who is hurting and broken and who needs a gentle reminder who holds the needle and thread of our lives.
This book offers hope when hurting, peace from the earth's trials and love from the only one who can ease pain, God. I learned so much from this book and I took my time in reading it so the author's words and thoughts could sink in and I could reflect on what I had read.
The personal life stories contained within this well written book tear at your heart and I realized that my life has not been as difficult as what others have endured. This book brings understanding and truth that no matter what happens you are not alone and that suffering is just not for one alone, that God and others can help. Each chapter and section contained something that I was able to personally benefit from or help others with, topics such as: learning to trust, handling depression, guilt, shame, anger and how to forgive, all relevant to everyone. Book also includes an extensive study guide.
I highly recommend this book to all who are hurting or who want to be a help to others who are torn and hurting. I received this