Broken Pieces and the God Who Mends Them: Lessons Learned on Mental Illness
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P & R Publishing / 2019 / Paperback
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Broken Pieces and the God Who Mends Them: Lessons Learned on Mental Illness

P & R Publishing / 2019 / Paperback

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In Stock
Stock No: WW953960


Product Information

Format: Paperback
Vendor: P & R Publishing
Publication Date: 2019
Dimensions: 8.50 X 5.50 (inches)
ISBN: 1629953962
ISBN-13: 9781629953960

Publisher's Description

Schizophrenia doesn’t just afflict our loved ones; it slowly replaces them with a stranger we no longer know or understand. It’s a harrowing, bewildering condition . . . and the church can seem ill-equipped to minister to those with mental illness and their families. Simonetta Carr acutely understands, and she offers her own experience in this story about a mother’s fierce love for her son. Holding nothing back, she chronicles the journey of her evolving role as the mother of a son with schizophrenia, as well as the guilt, hope, and fervent prayer that went along with it. She then moves beyond her own experience to bring help to others dealing with this illness, providing information and wisdom culled from psychiatrists, pastors, and sufferers of schizophrenia. Whether you are suffering yourself, have an afflicted loved one, or are caring for brothers and sisters in crises, Simonetta’s hard-won insights will uncover joy and the gospel in the midst of your situation and teach you to be an advocate for those who can’t fight for themselves.

Author Bio

Simonetta Carr, mother of eight and homeschool educator for twenty years, has worked as a freelance journalist and a translator of Christian works into Italian. She is the author of the series Christian Biographies for Young Readers.

Editorial Reviews

“Wow, Simonetta. Hard to hold back the tears for you. I love the way you weave in reflections and narrative. It never comes off as “preachy” or condescending to those who haven’t been through a similar experience. You have a wonderful way of inviting the reader into your life, your house, your family, your heart, to sympathize without feeling like you’re thinking in the back of your mind, ‘But you’ll never know.’ The practical insight is so valuable. As you know, we’ve been through some of these issues regarding the complicated and inextricable relationship between medical and spiritual issues. Thank the Lord that we live in this era of decent medicine (despite the challenges/frustrations you highlight so well). Just imagine even a generation or two ago how Jonathan (and you) would have been treated, by the world and by the church! Most importantly, the gospel rings out throughout the book. I can imagine someone coming to faith by reading something that they thought was far from evangelistic in intent.”
“I read your book on Jonathan today. It is a sad story, but full of so much encouragement from the gospel. You tell the story as a mother with a broken heart who has lost her precious boy. But at the same time, you tell the story as a woman with faith in Christ, a faith that does not always feel or appear strong, but relies on the strength of its object (your Savior). I appreciate how honest you are about your fears, confusion, and uncertainty. I think many people will identify with it. I appreciated it very much.”
“A Christian mother’s moving, practical, courageous and eloquent reflections on the emotional turmoil involved in caring for a son with schizophrenia. This takes the reader deep into wrestling with all the emotions and questions raised by such a devastating illness. This is by far the best book I have encountered that combines wise personal, medical, psychological, historical and deeply theological insights on a controversial topic. A great resource for families, students and professionals.”
“I have finally just finished your book, including the introduction, and am left quite touched. You have crafted a beautiful retelling of your story--one that does not pull punches or try to cover up blemishes, one that is very honest and sincere. Your references to Scripture and things like sermons and Heidelberg are well-timed and not heavy-handed. You mention at the beginning that you didn't want this to be a strictly "Christian" book. I think you balanced your witness well. Sometimes it sneaks up on the reader who is so engrossed in the biographical details, and I think in this way it will truly serve as a great tool for those who are seeking joy in difficult times and yet have not found it in Christ. Praise God for that!”
“It’s the most inspiring story I’ve ever read. Here’s a woman who has suffered the greatest pain a woman can be said to suffer—the loss of her child. Unlike many other women, though, that loss hasn’t warped or destroyed her—it’s refined and beautified her in a way that leaves the beholder awestruck at the mercy and goodness of God. It’s a story of how his grace and love really can and do sustain his people through even the most agonizing of times; taking what would normally destroy and annihilate and redeeming it to sanctify and glorify.”
“Your writing is clear and well-said. It had me in tears. I am SO sorry your son went through that! And you as mother, and the rest of your family! But yes, God's promise is all that matters and your son obviously called on Him early on. That's an assurance.”
“I finished reading part I of your book and you are truly an amazing woman for all that you've done for Jonathan and all God has put you through. I really liked how you weaved theology into it, especially how at the end you mention that we are part of a greater story. Truly God’s promises are all we can cling to. I found it really applicable to mine and X’s situation and you really woke me up in that I should be doing more. Just to see your example in devotion and fight was inspiring and was in a way a wake-up call for me in this storm I'm in.”
“I have to tell you, just reading the first couple of pages has brought me to tears because I'm seeing X in this so clearly! Your writing is like a magnet just drawing me in. I cannot tell you enough what it means to me that you've written this down on paper. It will help many.”
In Broken Pieces and the God Who Mends Them Simonetta Carr describes a painful journey that no parent ever wishes or expects to travel - the two years from her son Jonathan's diagnosis of schizophrenia to his death. She tells the story with vulnerability, expressing the pain that she, her husband, son Jonathan and their other children experienced, as well as the fear, frustration, helplessness, lament, and desperate seeking after God. By beginning each chapter with an entry from Jonathan's journal, she invites Jonathan to speak into the story as well. Raw and emotional, many parents on unexpected and unwanted journeys with their own child's mental illnesses will find a fellow traveler who tells her story and provides wisdom and even hope that God is faithful in the darkest circumstances.  
'The church has historically not understood mental illness well nor handled those with mental illness with appropriate care and compassion. That is thankfully changing but many Christians still suffer from common illnesses such as depression and even rarer ones such as psychosis and schizophrenia. To that we can add the countless family members who suffer because of the havoc they see these things wreaking on the lives of those they love.  Simonetta Carr is one such person and here is a heartfelt and heartbreaking account of how her own family has been been affected by such and how she still found hope even in the darkest hour in the God who saves.'
In Broken Pieces, Simonetta vulnerably lays open her heart and shares a story of love and loss, of suffering and redemption. Simonetta masterfully explores the brokenness of the mental health care system, the imperfections of our churches, the confusion of those who live in the grip of mental illness and the shattered hearts of those who love them. Yet in the midst of the pain and brokenness, Simonetta keeps drawing us back to the God who mends—the God of grace. Broken Pieces is a definite must-read for those who love someone living with a serious mental illness.

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