Archive for the ‘IVPress’ Category

The Bible’s View of Suffering

March 27, 2017

262017sufferingHuman suffering is a universal problem. As nurses, we see plenty of it. We know there are no easy answers, so how do we address the problem of suffering?

People often treat Scripture like a manual, looking for a single clear response that explains the presence of evil and suffering. Brian Han Gregg thinks we should take a different approach. He explores twelve themes related to the issue of human suffering in his book, What Does the Bible Say About Suffering? by InterVarsity Press.

Here is an excerpt:

“A survey of the various biblical approaches to suffering makes it clear that the biblical authors seek to do more than help us understand the why of suffering. In fact, in many instances answering the question Why? seems to be of secondary concern to the biblical authors.

Rather, the focus seems to lie on God’s various responses to suffering. What is God doing through suffering? What is God doing to address suffering? What is God doing to defeat suffering? If these are the points of emphasis in the Bible, we would be wise to pay attention to them.

The reality is the Bible doesn’t tell us everything we might wish to know about suffering, but it doesn’t set us adrift either. The Bible simply keeps God front and center. God knows about suffering. God cares about suffering. God is at work against suffering. God reigns over suffering. God suffers. God will one day declare final victory over suffering.”

The problem of suffering is painful, complex, and mysterious. This book does not have any simple answers, but it may lead you to discover a different path on the journey through it.


Become an NCF member and receive a 30% discount on all books from InterVarsity Press. Members also received the Journal of Christian Nursing which is loaded with biblically-based articles for nurses, including “Entering into Suffering: Becoming a Transformed and Transforming Healer” from JCN, Jan-March 2017 (1.5 credits).

Addressing Compassion Fatigue

April 17, 2015

Nursing on EmptyNurses who deal with frequent heartache may feel fatigued, stressed or lose their ability to nurture. But there is hope! This sensitive topic is addressed in the article, “Nursing on Empty: Compassion Fatigue Signs, Symptoms, and System Interventions,” a new article from the Journal of Christian Nursing.

“This article helped me admit I have compassion fatigue,” writes Kathy Schoonover Shoffner in her JCN editorial, “Hidden Component of Compassion Fatigue.” Kathy began searching for more resources to address her dryness and overall tiredness, and discovered a resource that deeply influenced her.

Kathy was introduced to the “pace of grace” in the book, An Unhurried Life: Following Jesus’ Rhythms of Work and Rest by Alan Fadling, published by InterVarsity Press.

“Quite unexpectedly, the author helped me diagnose a hidden component of compassion fatigue that I wasn’t recognizing—my sense of drive, my belief that being productive is the most valuable thing about me,” Kathy states. “I like telling people I have too much to do, that my life is crazy (fearing that if I say anything less, I’m lazy?).”

Yet Jesus worked hard and rested deeply; he cared passionately for people and was passionately cared for by his Father. We, too, can learn an unhurried, relaxed way of the heart that accepts what God thinks of us and follows Jesus’ lead.

Kathy concludes her editorial, “I think I’m ready to try this resting deeply, down time with God, unhurried approach, and see what happens to my compassion fatigue.”

If you think you may be affected by compassion fatigue, read Kathy’s editorial and take the steps you need to care for yourself—and compassionately care for others.

Become a member of NCF and regularly receive the peer-reviewed Journal of Christian Nursing as one of your member benefits. Or, subscribe to JCN.

Finding Hope in the Midst of Depression

June 8, 2012

When Life Goes DarkWhat can be done to help those suffering with depression? Psychiatrist and theologian Richard Winter examines the medical, psychological and spiritual issues surrounding depression in his latest book, When Life Goes Dark, new from InterVarsity Press.

The author explores the complex medical and psychological issues surrounding depression. He sorts through recent scientific research on its biochemical and genetic causes and examines social and cultural factors. Winter also dispels common Christian misunderstandings of depression and looks at how biblical characters experienced severe despair. Throughout, he offers help for the suffering and hope for healing and deliverance.

The book addresses some of these questions:

  • What does the disorder of depression encompass?
  • How does someone find contentment? How does this relate to the Bible?
  • How do chemistry, genes and biology affect the impact of depression?
  • How can early childhood affect a person’s mood in later years?
  • In what ways might there be a “satanic influence” on moods and experiences?

We recommend this book as a helpful guide for those who find themselves, their loved ones or those they counsel vulnerable to depression. When Life Goes Dark offers a framework both for understanding depression and for rediscovering hope.