prepared for pain?

I read Where Is God When It Hurts about 5 years ago, before we knew. I remember feeling drawn to buy it and at that time had a fleeting thought that I hoped I wasn’t being prepared for hard times ahead(!)  I have found so often that God has gone ahead and prepared a way for me or given me a word or tools beforehand, that I have been able to draw on when needed and sometimes only recognised them later as His grace and love. He is always my safe place!

Around the same time I remember giving a one or two friends this verse on their birthdays and special occasions: Jeremiah 29:11 – For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. And then one day it dawned on me, that perhaps this verse was actually for me since it seemed to be popping up so much – Duh!!  Jeremiah 29:11 is often over-used as a feel-good verse but I started having this uneasy sense that it was to be a future affirmation anchor – so that I would not doubt Gods plans for my life if a storm hit – and to remember to cling to hope, because I would need it. I even wrote on the very first page of (what has now become) my babyhope dairy: “This verse, it keeps popping up, I wonder what it means?… thinking it might be for me.”  Then the second page entry records the day we heard that my husband was sterile. This epiphany came when we were just into our *trying to fall pregnant (altho I prefer to call it *active hoping as I trust it’s never JUST trying when those little ovuls-start-lating… but hey, to be real, many women will probably know the crazy of that place 🙂

So when my storm hit, I was able to draw back from this book as well, using many anchors and truths that had already been placed in my foundations.

HERE ARE TWO BOOK BLURBS: Let me know what you think if you read them?

Where Is God When It Hurts?: Philip Yancey
Winner of the Gold Medallion Award and an inspirational best-seller for over twenty years, Where is God When it Hurts? Has been revised and updated by the author to explore the many important issues that have arisen during that time. Sensitive and caring, this unique book discusses pain–physical, emotional, and spiritual–and helps us understand why we suffer from it and how to cope with our own and that of others. Using examples from the Bible as well as the author’s personal experiences, this expanded edition speaks to everyone for whom life sometimes doesn’t make sense. Philip Yancey can help us discover how to reach out to someone in pain even when we don’t know what to say. It shows us how we can learn to accept without blame, anger, or fear that which we cannot understand.

I havent read this one yet….. also sounds good!
Gift of Pain: Paul Brand & Philip Yancey
A WORLD WITHOUT PAIN? Can such a place exist? It not only can—it does. But it’s no utopia. It’s a colony for leprosy patients: a world where people literally feel no pain, and reap horrifying consequences. His work with leprosy patients in India and the United States convinced Dr. Paul Brand that pain truly is one of God’s great gifts to us. In this inspiring story of his fifty-year career as a healer, Dr. Brand probes the mystery of pain and reveals its importance. As an indicator that lets us know something is wrong, pain has a value that becomes clearest in its absence. The Gift of Pain looks at what pain is and why we need it. Together, the renowned surgeon and award-winning writer Philip Yancey shed fresh light on a gift that none of us want and none of us can do without.

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