“Finding Faith in the Dark” – When the story of your life takes a turn you didn’t plan


I just finished reading Laurie Polich Short’s new book “Finding Faith in the Dark.” It was a quick, enjoyable, encouraging read. The premise of the book is this… many Christians live life quoting 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 from that we somehow draw the conclusion that “our plans” and “God’s plans” are one in the same, or at the very least, that everything is going to work out in amazing ways, “beyond what we can hope or imagine.” (Ephesians 3:20)

And it doesn’t. Eventually life collides with our faith, as our hopes and dreams are confronted by harsh reality. At least for most people. And as a career youth worker, this single point of pop-theology is the knock-out blow to the faith of many young adults who grow up in the church. We preach that God is good, we teach that we are his children, we more than infer that God the Father only wants to give good gifts to his children. But life rarely works that way. And when something bad eventually happens, it creates a crisis of faith that many young adults simply don’t survive and they walk away from the church, many times on God himself.

Laurie does a great job of chronicling story after story of people who’s lives didn’t go according to plan, and pain was introduced to their lives through no fault of their own. She also includes her own very personal journey through pain and disappointment to eventual resolution.

Her conclusion is this. Your plans are not his plans, your ways are not His ways and although life may not turn out the way your originally thought, God is faithful to journey with us through our pain. And the place He leads us is good, albeit not the way we would draw it up.

I would especially recommend this book to anyone you know who finds themselves somewhere in the journey of pain and disillusionment… which is all of us at some point, right?

Sorry it took so long for me to read this Laurie. Great job. It’s been a privilege to journey with you as a friend for the past 10 years of your story.

And there’s a lot more story still to be written…
“Stay in the Journey my friend.”

~Mark

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