In this best-selling classic on the subject of loss and renewal, first published in 1989, the author comes alongside people in pain, and shows the way through and beyond it, to joy again. This book has proven helpful to those who are struggling and to those who wish to understand and help. Having lost his first son in 1978, Dr. Biebel became immersed in pain, again, in 1986, when his second son, Christopher, was stricken with the same genetically linked illness that had caused Jonathan’s death just a few years earlier.
The preface captures the book’s honesty and practicality:
“All around us, people are in pain. Emotional, physical, relational, spiritual – whatever its sources, the pain feels the same. Even born-again, sincere, evangelical, Bible-believing, church-going, church-leading believers are in pain…. Many who hurt have been nursing the wounds for so long they can’t remember what it’s like to be anything other than sad. Others denied the pain and submerged the anger so long ago that they are unaware how the resulting depression, even bitterness, has subtly impacted their ability to love…. Now I know it’s possible you’ve heard a lot of principles and endured too much advice. So I’ll skip most of that and try for something else: Truth – one pilgrim to another. And the truth is, pain has two faces, human and divine. The human face is haggard, drawn, contorted, and streaked with tears. The divine is calm, assuring, kind, and loving – but likewise streaked with tears.”