Review: When There Are No Easy Answers

When There Are No Easy Answers by John Feinberg is personal and powerful work on suffering and the Christian. Feinberg draws on his own personal experience of walking with his life through her initial diagnosis of Huntington’s disease and the subsequent course their life took giving practical advice in how to walk through suffering and how to minister to those who suffer.

Feinberg lays out his own personal wrestling with the problem of suffering, not just as a theoretical issue of philosophy but as a very real personal experience. He traces the feelings that those who experience might suffer pointing out the feelings of abandonment, anger, and betrayal that might arise. I think the third chapter of this book is one that could stand on its own. Often when we are dealing with others who are suffering we want to merely address the intellectual aspects and that too often with short glib answers. Feinberg effectively shows how these easy answers we try to address suffers with often hurt more than they help. Feinberg in the following chapters makes clear that in all of our suffering there is still evidence of God’s goodness to us. Feinberg struggled with a feeling that somehow God had deceived him by not telling them what awaited them in the future, Feinberg shows this too is God’s goodness as the present has enough to concern us.

As someone who is theologically and philosophically oriented this book was a helpful corrective for me. This book has helped me think through the personal and emotional aspects of suffering in addition to the intellectual questions that arise in light of suffering. I’d recommend this book to anyone. This isn’t just a book for ministers, this a book for anyone as we will all experience some suffering and we will walk with others through suffering.

Disclosure: I received this book free from the publisher for providing this review. The opinions I have expressed are my own, and I was not required to write a positive review. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html

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