Someone once said that everybody is having a hard time with something. The longer I live the more I think they were right. We are sinners living with other sinners in a sin cursed world. The oldest book in the Bible says it best, “Man that is born of a woman is of few days and full of trouble” (Job 14:1).
Now, this is not meant to be a depressing post! It is simply an acknowledgement that all of us at some time will go through a hard time. It is very important who you listen to at those moments. If you are not careful you will only listen to your own thoughts, and discouraged people often overstate their own problems. Worse yet, you may find yourself listening to the accuser of the brethren, the Devil. He likes to whisper in your ear when you are low.
The most important book to read when you are in difficulty in the Word of God. Let God speak. Listen to the Comforter. I have specific portions of Scripture, like John 17, that I turn to when I am struggling. You should identify passages like that for yourself.
It is also helpful to read after those who have themselves gone through great trial and found the grace of God in the middle of their hurt. Here are a few that I would suggest…
Though I Walk Through the Valley by Vance Havner (This classic little book was written at the time of Mrs. Havner’s death. These short chapters are rich and full of grace and truth.)
The Treasures of Darkness by Clarence Sexton (I recommend a number of Pastor Sexton’s books because of the way they shaped my life. This book was written after the death of five precious college students. I was there during this difficult season and experienced the grace and peace only God can give to families and friends.)
Dark Threads the Weaver Needs by Herbert Lockyer (Lockyer was a prolific writer and I would recommend that you obtain every book he wrote. In this volume Lockyer addresses the problem of human suffering and leads us to the God that is greater than humans and greater than suffering.)
In God’s Waiting Room by Lehman Strauss (Strauss’ commentaries have always helped me as I have studied Scripture but this book is different than his expositions. It was written when his wife suffered a stroke and deals with the truth God gave them during their trial. Very personal and helpful.)
The Bumps Are What You Climb On by Warren Wiersbe (This noted Bible teacher and author recently went to heaven but his books continue to be a great blessing to many. These meditations provide encouragement for difficult days.)
There are many more books that could be on this list. What book has God used to help you in hard times?
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