Scarred Faith: Grief Lingers But Hope Remains

Throughout this year, I will be sharing one book review each month. I am not a professional book reviewer, but I would like to share my thoughts about some of the books I have read recently that have impacted my life in meaningful ways. This week’s review is of Scarred Faith by Josh Ross. The entire Ross family has been a blessing to many people across the world. Read this book and be blessed by how God worked in Josh’s life and how He can work in your life. The book is available for purchase here: 

http://www.amazon.com/Scarred-Faith-Risk-Taking-Brokenness-Adventurous-ebook/dp/B008J2ACF4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1391120018&sr=8-1&keywords=scarred+faith

The question is not if you will face pain and suffering in your life, but when. Josh Ross has written a book detailing how facing one’s personal suffering can help in working with the suffering of others.

Ross lives in Memphis and is faced with the suffering of the city’s residents on a daily basis. As the cover of the book says, this book is a story about how suffering and brokenness ignited an adventurous faith.

It has been my experience that suffering scares us. We fall into the trap of thinking that faithful lives shield us from pain and suffering, yet it is in the pain and suffering that we can see the work of God and presence of Jesus.

This book is about scars; scars that can be redeemed by Jesus.

I first came across Josh Ross and his family when I was following the Caring Bridge page for his sister, Jenny—a student at Abilene Christian University when I attended there. Jenny lost her battle on February 22, 2010. In the weeks and months that followed, I had the honor of hearing Josh speak about his struggle with the pain of losing a sister. In fact, the entire Ross family became a strength and support to hundreds and thousands of people across the world as they shared their faith in the midst of their pain.

Josh shares the story in this book of his mother looking at his father shortly after Jenny died. She asked her husband to remind her what they believe. They had just lost a child. What did their faith mean now? Josh’s father responded simply, but powerfully, “The tomb is still empty.”

Eight months later, my oldest brother, Robert, passed away. I was able to look to the Ross family as examples of what it means to continue having faith in the midst of pain and struggle. I learned what it meant to allow my scars to be redeemed and used by God to benefit others. Josh Ross is not defined by his pain. He is defined by the One who redeems his pain and suffering. A scarred faith is a faith that has been redeemed by Jesus.

If you have ever felt pain or suffering in your life or if you have witnessed pain and suffering in the lives of people around you, please read this book. Learn how God redeems our pain and continues to walk with us.

I am lucky enough to have an autographed copy of Scarred Faith. Josh’s note to me: “Grief lingers, but we hold on to hope.”

How grateful I am for this story of a scarred faith.

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