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Resources: suffering

I struggle with forgiving my parents for the painful home environment I grew up in. Do you know of any books that could help me?

If God Is Good ...I highly recommend David Augsburger’s The Freedom of Forgiveness. Also, Philip Yancy’s What’s So Amazing about Grace?, which shows us how God’s forgiveness of us should result in our forgiveness of others. Another good one is Forgive and Forget: Healing the Hurts We Don’t Deserve, by Lewis Smedes. In checking around on Amazon I also found a book called I Should Forgive, but . . .  Finding Release from Anger and Bitterness, by Chuck Lynch. It might be helpful. I also found some good reader reviews of Forgiving Our Parents, Forgiving Ourselves: Healing Adult Children of Dysfunctional Families ...

If God Is Good: 99 Quotes and Illustrations

If God Is Good1.  Truth must touch both heart and mind.

Though I write personally, from the heart, and tell stories of great courage and perspective, I must also present a case from Scripture and appeal to logic. But remember this: you are a whole person, and the path to your heart travels through your mind. Truth matters. To touch us at the heart level-and to keep touching us over days, months, years, and decades—truth must work its way into our minds.

2.  God’s truth about Himself.

In writing his magnificent story of redemption, God has revealed truths about himself, us, the world, goodness, evil, suffering, and Heaven and Hell. Those truths God reveals to us teem with life. The blood of man and God flows through them. God speaks with passion, not indifference; he utters fascinating words, not dull ones. To come to grips with the problem of evil and suffering, you must do more than hear heart-wrenching stories about suffering people. You much hear God’s truth to help you interpret those stories.

If God Is Good: Chapter Summaries

Chapter Summary Excerpts from

If God Is Good…

by Randy Alcorn


Understanding the Problem of Evil and Suffering

Chapter One: Why is the Problem of Evil and Suffering So Important?

More people point to the problem of evil and suffering as their reason for not believing in God than any other—it is not merely a problem, it is the problem. You will not get far in a conversation with someone who rejects the Christian faith before the problem of evil is raised. Pulled out like the ultimate trump card, it’s supposed to silence believers and prove ...

If God Is Good: Introduction and Chapter 2

To Those Who Are Hurting and Confused

I came to know my friend Jim Harrell after he read my book Heaven. We talked on the phone, exchanged e-mails, and quickly connected at a heart level. Jim, a successful businessman, strong and athletic for most of his life, told me he really looked forward to reading If God Is Good. He asked me for the first draft, which I happily sent him.

If God Is Good: Table of Contents

If God Is Good  ...

If God Is Good... Faith in the Midst of Suffering and Evil

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xi

Introduction: A Note to Readers, Especially to Those Hurting

          and Confused . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

If God will ultimately destroy evil why does he allow it to exist now?

Evil’s reality, quantity, and extremes have long perplexed Christians. Why does God permit evil? And why so much? And why in its most hideous forms?

If you were the author, how would you have written the story?

writerWe value in story the conflict we avoid in life. What makes a good story? Interesting characters, significant conflict, the thwarting of desires, and a satisfying (if not triumphant) resolution. It must avoid predictability and its characters have to continuously develop—and the higher the stakes, the better the story.

Now, consider God as the great Storyteller. With grand artistry, he writes into the story the characters, both angels and people, with different names, personas, and circumstances. He tells us of Michael and Lucifer, brother archangels. Lucifer rebels and becomes Satan. He takes a third of the angels down with him. When Satan first appears in the garden, we know none of this; God doesn’t tell us this backstory until much later.

In Africa, A Scourge Beyond Imagining

AfricaThe fresh mounds of earth stretch as far as the eye can see. Each grave in Zambia’s Chunga cemetery is topped with a withered floral tribute and a makeshift cross. During the weekend, a new funeral procession arrives every 15 or 20 minutes. On one day, 52 people are buried; 43 of them were between the ages of 19 and 50. Most are Africa’s latest victims of AIDS.

The deadly epidemic is tearing through the continent, decimating Africans in their most productive years. In all, AIDS will kill some 2.4 million people in Africa this year, many ...

Is (2 Cor. 12:9)

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” (2 Cor. 12:9)

It had pleased God to remove my youngest child under circumstances of peculiar trial and pain; and as I had just laid my little one’s body in the churchyard, on return home, I felt it my duty to preach to my people on the meaning of trial.

Finding that this text was in the lesson for the following Sabbath, I chose ...

Is it fair for a handicapped person to spend his life in a wheelchair and have to patiently wait until he dies to be able to walk in Heaven?

Without an eternal perspective, without ­under­standing the reality that the best is yet to come, we assume that people who die young, who are handicapped, who ­aren’t healthy, who ­don’t get married, or who ­don’t _____ [fill in the blank] inevitably miss out on the best life has to offer.

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