(Review) A Small Book for the Hurting Heart: Meditations on Loss, Grief, and Healing by Paul Tautges

A Small Book for the Hurting Heart
Publisher and Publication Date: New Growth Press. March 9, 2020.
Genre: Christian Nonfiction. Grieving. Suffering. Spiritual Growth.
Pages: 192.
Source: I received a complimentary hard cover copy from New Growth Press, I was not required to write a positive review.
Audience: Readers who are going through a season of suffering.
Rating: Excellent.

Size of the book:
Width:

4.30 (in)
Height:
6.30 (in)

Amazon link 

Goodreads page for Paul Tautges

To read more information about the book at the publisher: New Growth Press.
To read a sample page:
https://newgrowthpress.com/content/Samples/A-Small-Book-for-the-Hurting-Heart-Sample.pdf

Paul Tautges
Author Info: 
Paul Tautges serves as one of the pastors of Cornerstone Community Church in Mayfield Heights, Ohio (east of Cleveland). Prior to accepting the Lord’s call to Cornerstone, he pastored in Wisconsin for 22 years. Paul has been married to Karen since 1986. Together they enjoy their ten children and their spouses, and their growing tribe of grandchildren. He is also an adjunct professor, certified biblical counselor and teaching fellow for the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors, and a council board member of the Biblical Counseling Coalition. Paul has written or edited over 50 books and mini-books.
Paul blogs @ https://counselingoneanother.com
Facebook page @ Counseling One Another
Twitter @PaulTautges

Endorsements: 
“When we hurt and ask God ‘why?,’ we often are not looking for answers. Rather, our hearts are looking for comfort, encouragement, and Fatherly assurance that our world is not spinning out of control. In his new work, A Small Book for the Hurting Heart, my friend Paul Tautges points the reader to helpful insights from the best Answer of all, the Lord Jesus. Every page is filled with bite-sized wisdom from the Word of God, providing healing hope for every heart that hurts. I heartily endorse this small but power-packed book!”
~ Joni Eareckson Tada, “Joni and Friends International Disability Center”

“Grief is sometimes too burdensome to search for direction and comfort in Scripture. We want the encouragement of Scripture but don’t have the energy to find just the right passages. In this little book, Paul has found those right passages and brought us into them so they can be brought into us.”
~ Edward T. Welch, author of A Small Book for the Anxious Heart; faculty, “Christian Counseling & Educational Foundation”

“How often I have wished for this kind of resource to share with a friend in the throes of grief. A wise, seasoned pastor and counselor, Paul Tautges comes alongside the person in pain with short, encouraging, grace-filled reflections from God’s Word. These meditations will lift up weary hearts and tear-stained faces and help them find compassion and hope in the face of Christ.”
~ Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth, Author; founder and host of “Revive Our Hearts”

Summary: 
Grief may threaten to overtake us or destroy our joy. In this powerful devotional book, men and women will see Jesus, the Man of Sorrows, who is well-acquainted with grief and sadness.
Author and pastor Paul Tautges offers our comforting High Priest, sharing how the Holy Spirit ministers to our hurting heart through the healing balm of God’s Word graciously applied to life’s wounds.
By Biblically and transparently addressing the heart and faith struggles in the midst of this grief, A Small Book for the Hurting Heart delves deeply, but gently, into the issues of the heart—presenting encouragement and comfort in the character of God revealed in his Word.
This small but transformative devotional cultivates anchors of hope, redirecting men and women to the trustworthiness of God who is always for us in Christ. Because all of God’s promises are Yes in Christ, Tautges walks with readers through their grief to see the one who nourishes our faith and heals our soul.
In fifty brief readings, your hurting heart will find spiritual help, encouragement, and healing as you experience the comfort of God.

My Thoughts:
I consider it a blessing when a book I’m reading for review is meeting me just where I need it. Another words, A Small Book for the Hurting Heart is applicable for my life today. Consider page 13, “We are in a strange place.” I am living in a strange place in time because of the COVID-19. The generation closest to mine that has lived through a pandemic is my grandparents, who were all children during the Spanish Flu of 1918. I am living in a strange and surreal situation. I am so thankful to be in my own home, with food to eat, and with family I love.
The book is primarily written to readers who are going through a season of grieving and suffering. For example, the death of a loved one. However, I pulled several thoughts out of the book that spoke to me. For example, “Don’t let fear turn you away from God.” Page 13. This teaching is taught in the book several times. Don’t turn away from God and towards the fear and suffering. It is so easy to focus on the fear or hardship. Tautges reminds me to focus on God. Another big teaching that’s helped. “My friend, I don’t want you to merely survive your season of suffering. I want you to thrive.” Page 111. How do I thrive during this ordeal of stress? I write in a gratitude journal. I’m on number 100. I write down simple things. These are things that are often taken for granted. For example, the smell of banana bread when it’s baking or the sound of birds singing.

Additional reasons why I love this little book:
•It’s small but packed with valuable help.
•It’s a book of comfort, encouragement, and compassion.
•It’s divided in to 50 daily reads. Most are 3 pages long.
•I loved the Bible verses directing me to read from God’s Word about Tautges’s teaching.
•Tautges gives applicable ideas for me. For example: “Are you looking to your eternal inheritance with eyes of faith? Read about your eternal inheritance in Ephesians 1:11-18, and then take a few moments to thank God for His watchful care.”
•The book is perfect for a new Christian or a person who has been a Christian a long time.

Bible verse link is to Bible Gateway.

 

(Review) Three books by Ruth Chou Simons

 

gracelaced

 

 

Publisher and Publication Date: Harvest House Publishers. 2017.
Genre: Art. Christian devotional.
Pages: 224.
Source: Self-purchase.
Audience: Christian readers who love art and devotional material.
Rating: Excellent.
Product dimensions: 8 x 1 x 10 inches .
Amazon link

 

 

garden of truth

Publisher and Publication Date: Harvest House Publishers. 2018.
Genre: Art. Christian Devotional.
Pages: 120.
Source: Self-purchase.
Audience: Christian readers who love art and devotional material.
Rating: Very good. My least favorite only because it’s small (5.3 inch width by 7.1 inch length.) However, it’s a lovely book and compliments the trio.
Amazon link

beholding

Publisher and Publication Date: Harvest House Publishers. 2019.
Genre: Art. Christian devotional.
Pages: 224.
Source: Self-purchase.
Audience: Christian readers who love art and devotional content.
Rating: Excellent. This book is my favorite of all three. It’s also the first one I bought which led me to buy all three.
Dimensions of the book: 7.6 x 1 x 9.1 inches.
Amazon link 

The Amazon links show illustrations of all the books.
All three are amazing.
They are beautiful to read all the way through from the first page to the last.

Beholding and Becoming addresses issues like:
control,
God as the Creator,
learn to live the life we have,
our treasures,
praise,
the words we speak.

You can find the author @ GraceLaced. 
Facebook
Pinterest 

 

 

 

(Review) Grace Revealed: Finding God’s Strength in Any Crisis by Fred Sievert

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Publisher and Publishing Date: BroadStreet. January 1, 2018.
Genre: Christian nonfiction. Grace, faith, healing.
Pages: 256.
Source: Free copy from BroadStreet Publishing.
Rating: Very Good.

Landing page at Litfuse for the book tour: Grace Revealed.
litfuse

Amazon

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Fred Sievert is a speaker, author, and former president of New York Life Insurance Company. Following his early retirement at age fifty-nine, Sievert attended Yale Divinity School and received a master’s degree. Sievert remains actively engaged in his greatest passions, which include speaking and writing about his faith, mentoring young executives, and serving as a lay leader of his church and on the boards of several organizations with missions well-aligned with his beliefs and values. Fred and his wife have five grown children, three grandchildren, and reside in East Falmouth, Massachusetts.

Find out more about Fred at https://www.storiesofgodsgrace.com.

Summary: (from the publisher)
You can’t escape the inevitable crises that will face you throughout your lifetime. Whether it’s health problems, emotional issues, career challenges, gut-wrenching losses, or other failures, these experiences can destroy your morale and lead you into despair. Some crises may be a result of your own choices, while others may be completely out of your control. Whatever the source, there is a lasting solution that comes to you free of charge from above: God’s amazing grace.
In Grace Revealed, you will:
-Experience real-life stories of others who discover they are not alone and that relief is within their grasp.
-See how devastating afflictions can be overcome through faith in Jesus and His love, mercy, and grace.
-Learn how God’s grace transforms lives and leads you into enduring and rewarding Christian service.
-Be inspired to encourage others who are suffering but cannot seek help on their own.
Read these undeniable, modern-day examples of God’s loving grace and its transformative power, and discover that God is always present in your time of need.

My Thoughts:
From the Preface:

Throughout my lifetime, hearing or reading about the faith journeys of thousands of Christians has substantiated my belief that individuals most often come to know Christ when they cry out to Him in a crisis. And often, their faith is reinforced, or even inspired, by the testimony of others who are willing to share the stories of their own personal relationships with Christ and how they were triggered.

People, and even Christians, tend to remain silent about their troubles. I’ve noticed that when we share our pain, this moves other people to then share their pain. There is a strong feeling of identifying with the pain of another person. The feelings of, “I understand because I’ve been there” is powerful.
A few years ago in a discussion group, I shared briefly that I’d been in an abusive relationship as a teenage girl. I’d been abused in every way, including sexual abuse. After I shared, four other women shared they too had been sexually abused. We just looked at each other afterwards with teary eyes, because we identified with each other’s heartache, and we had compassion for each other in a way that a person who is not an abuse survivor can know.
It is with this goal, Grace Revealed, has been written: sharing stories of heartache and a faith journey so others may be encouraged.

In the eight chapters, the first is a defining chapter on what grace is in the Bible.
Chapter two is on abuse.
Chapter three is on addictions.
Chapter four is on problems related to “emotional and physical issues.”
Chapter five is on “career-related challenges.”
Chapter six is on family problems.
Chapter seven is on grief.
Chapter eight is a summary of the book.

The book is filled with contributions from people and less from Fred Sievert. He compiles the stories into this book. Included in each chapter is, “My Thoughts” section, “Time for Personal Reflection,” “Healing Insights,” and a prayer for the specific issue.

What I love about Grace Revealed is the personal stories. I’ve read books of this type where the emphasis is on the author’s knowledge of subject and their opinion. This book is meant to be encouragement from those who have had struggles and a building up of their faith.
I love the prompting early in the book that we are to extend grace to Christians in need.
I love the prayers shown in each chapter. Sometimes as a Christian I struggle with how to pray about a specific problem. I love how the prayers are transparent, humble, and focused on God who is sovereign and Lord over-all.