My next 3 books are almost here! Have a look!
Yep, three different books! And they'll all come out around the same time, Lord willing. As soon as they're published, they'll all be available on Amazon.com, every one of them in both paperback and ebook. I'll make sure to send you an email letting you know when they're available. You can see the book covers and book descriptions of all of them now at my website.
You Can Help Launch My 3 New Books!
If you’d like to help with the launch, be part of the Early Review Team for one or more of the new books.
In a nutshell, here's what you'd do: 1. Buy one of the books, 2. Read it, 3. Post your brief comments about the book (I’ll provide links so you can comment at Amazon.com and a couple other places).
Just send me a reply email to let me know you’re in, and I’ll send you the easy how-to.
And now, for something that sounds totally unrelated, but is soooo related to why I want to get these books out into the world.
When Something in Your Life Doesn’t Look Like God Loves You
Is there something in your life right now—or in the life of someone you love—that you probably wouldn’t say is exhibit A of God’s love?
Suffering comes in many forms. Elisabeth Elliot said suffering is having what you don’t want, and not having what you do want. It can wear on you, and on your faith. It can raise questions about the quantity and quality of God’s love for you.
Recently, at the height of a prolonged spiritual battle, I came to the point where I had to make one decision, and make it thoroughly. I had to be completely convinced in my heart, mind, and soul, of the answer to one question: Are God’s intentions toward me loving?
I wrote about the experience in this recent blog entry. But what I didn’t talk about there was that, during this years-long spiritual battle, I had multiple invitations from the enemy to align with people who had either overtly lost their faith over this very issue, or who had settled for an uneasy, bitter-looking truce with God—faith with lots of sore spots.
I read their books. They explained the reasons they were at odds with God over the way he had allowed them and others to be treated. God’s dealings with them appeared unloving.
Some of their reasoning actually sounded quite… reasonable. After all, if it doesn’t look like love, it’s pretty easy to conclude that it’s not love. Especially when it’s happening to you.
God is in control of everything so he could stop this, but he isn’t lifting a finger for you, the serpent says. This thing in your life—(Fill in your own blank—Satan has been reusing this line for hundreds of generations, for every kind of suffering he causes)—is evidence that God isn’t always love.
Deceit sprinkles in just enough truth to make itself look like light. But it is darkness. By knowing the Scriptures—the same way Jesus overcame his own temptation—we can overcome the temptation to align with clever lies.
Jesus showed us how, when he used the Scripture he knew to recognize lies, and then spoke the words of Scripture out loud to demolish those lies (Matthew 4:1-11).
We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ…
2 Corinthians 10:5 (ESV)
When you search the Scriptures to find the truth of God’s love for you, you will find it.
It’s a trap of the enemy to be offended with God. There wouldn’t have been much point in Jesus saying this unless there was a pretty good chance that a hurting person might stumble over God’s dealings with him: “And blessed is he who does not take offense at Me” (Matthew 11:6 NASB).
When I can trust God’s love—even when I do not see him act the way I expect or think he should—I am blessed. Because then I can rest securely in his love, independent of visible outcomes.
I want to recommend two faith-building books that helped cement my decision that God’s intentions toward me are loving, regardless of what parts of life may look like. These books came to me at a time when I had made that decision, but was still having to literally remind myself of it frequently. These books provided agreement and confirmation from two people who famously kept the faith despite their suffering—Elisabeth Elliot and John the Baptist.
Suffering is Never for Nothing by Elisabeth Elliot –The late Elliot’s famous credentials to talk about suffering prompted me to read this book immediately upon its recent publication. Based on a transcript of a talk she gave, Elliot’s pragmatic advice is interwoven with accounts of how she lived out her faith when her suffering was at its most intense.
The Prisoner in the Third Cell by Gene Edwards – From God’s own viewpoint, how does it look when God appears not to rescue—or even explain himself to—a suffering person he dearly loves? This is a stunningly creative and captivating look at events in the lives of John the Baptist and his younger cousin, Jesus of Nazareth. The Prisoner in the Third Cell acknowledges a mystery, yet brings real comfort at the same time with the truth it contains.
God often strengthens us through what he has given someone else to build up the whole church (1 Corinthians 14:12; Ephesians 4:11-12; Romans 1:11-12). And sometimes that comes in the form of books written by believers that help strengthen faith.
And that’s why I’m excited to get my next 3 books into the hands of everyone God already had in mind when he gave me those books to live and write.
If you’d like to help with the book launch by being part of the Early Review Team, reply to this email to let me know, and I’ll send you an email soon with the details!