The Question That Never Goes Away

The Question That Never Goes Away

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by Philip Yancey

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Finding Meaning in the Midst of Suffering

In his classic book Where Is God When It Hurts, Philip Yancey gave us permission to doubt, reasons not to abandon faith, and practical ways to reach out to hurting people.

And now, thirty years after writing his first book, Yancey revisits our cry of “Why, God” in three


Finding Meaning in the Midst of Suffering

In his classic book Where Is God When It Hurts, Philip Yancey gave us permission to doubt, reasons not to abandon faith, and practical ways to reach out to hurting people.

And now, thirty years after writing his first book, Yancey revisits our cry of “Why, God” in three places stunned into silence by the calamities that have devastated them.  At some point all of us will face the challenges to faith Yancey writes about and look for the comfort and hope he describes.

There are reasons to ask, once again, the question that never goes away: Where is God when we suffer? And Yancey, once again, leads us to find faith when it is most severely put to the test.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The question of why God allows suffering remains unanswered for many, so the bestselling author of Where is God When it Hurts? revisits it. He shares experiences meeting with those dealing with loss after the tsunami in Japan, the war in Sarajevo, and the school massacre in Newtown, Conn. Yancey still can’t provide a definitive answer that will satisfy everyone about how God allows these kind of tragedies while conceivably able to prevent them, but the lessons learned by those who have made it through the land of suffering can be passed on to help those still on the journey, the author says. We might not be able to make sense of why, but we can control how we respond. Yancey includes advice about how to offer comfort to those suffering, as well as encouragement from people whose faith has been renewed and strengthened in a God who shares pain and hard times. Jesus was no stranger to suffering, after all, and his followers, reaching out in love, are evidence of God’s presence in the midst of the worst tragedies, Yancey says. Agent: Kathryn Helmers, Creative Trust. (Jan. 7)

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Zondervan Publishing
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2 MB
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18 Years

Meet the Author

Philip Yancey serves as editor-at-large for Christianity Today magazine. He has written thirteen Gold Medallion Award-winning books and won two ECPA Book of the Year awards for What's So Amazing About Grace? and The Jesus I Never Knew. Four of his books have sold over one million copies. Yancey lives with his wife in Colorado.  Website:



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The Question That Never Goes Away 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Question That Never Goes Away, Why By Philip Yancey Mr. Yancey discusses the always present question when things go wrong. When he was a year old, he lost his father to Polio. His first book, entitled Where Is God When It Hurts?” dealt with the grief and pain of times when God allowed suffering into the lives of His children. In his latest book The Question That Never Goes Away, he visits three areas of the world where disaster prevailed. He discusses the tragedy of the earthquake/tsunami and the aftermath. He relates what he saw in the bloodbath of the Balkans some 30 years after the civil war there. He then writes about his experience of going to Newtown, Connecticut and speaking to those who lost children in Sandy Hook Elementary School. Clive Calver, someone with whom Philip had worked some time ago, called him to come to Newtown and speak on his first book Where Is God When it Hurts? Mr. Calver served as a minister in a church just outside the town limits of Newtown. Several of the church members were teachers at that school. Philip Yancey asked for prayers from a group of close friends to pray for him as he spoke at “the toughest speaking assignment” he ever had.  This book is not an ‘easy read’. It is a necessary read for Christian counselors, first responders, pastors, and dedicated prayer warriors,  I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers through its BookSneeze program. All I was asked to do was read it and give an impartial review.
Patito_de_Hule More than 1 year ago
Synopsis: After over a decade of traveling the world giving lectures on Where is God When it Hurts, Philip Yancy has decided to revisit this subject in his most recent book The Question That Never Goes Away. I have not read his earlier book, so I can't compare the messages of each, but I assume the newer book has a similar message to the older, with recent examples and insights that he has gathered since writing the first book.  He starts by describing two different types of disaster: the devastating 2011 tsunami in Japan and the horrifying 4-year seige of Sarajevo in 1992. The first example is a natural disaster, but the second is man-made. Such disasters beg the question "Why?" Why would a God who loves us allow such destruction? Yancy points out that atheists have a field day with such calamity - using it as evidence that God doesn't exist. For, clearly, a loving God wouldn't allow such things to happen; therefore it is erroneous to believe in God. But Yancy counters: if, indeed, this is an impersonal universe of random indifference, why are the atheists so shocked and upset about someone else's tragedy? Clearly, their morals are shaped by the philosophical framework of Christianity.  Yancy continues by explaining that there's nothing wrong with asking the question "Why?" In fact, it is a question asked over and over again in the Bible. God expects such questions, and he understands our grief and frustration at getting no answer. BUT, He still doesn't provide an answer. Not in the Bible. And not in the world.  Yancy suggests that we shift our focus from cause to response. When disaster strikes, we should appreciate the outpouring of humanitarian aide that comes from individuals, communities, and countries. Yes - some of this humanitarian aide can be poorly planned, but notice what lies at the heart: love. We, as human beings, want to reach out and help those who are suffering. So where is God when it hurts? He is in those friends, neighbors, and complete strangers who reach out to help the suffering. God hates our suffering as much as we do - but he loves us so much that he sent his own son to suffer among us. Because we can relate to a suffering God.  Finally, Yancy criticizes the claim that God sends suffering in order to build character. He points out that Jesus healed the afflicted. He never once said to them "But think of how character-building this experience is!" Yancy points out that God has promised to redeem our suffering. This does not mean that God sends suffering, but that when tragedy occurs, He inspires and directs good to result from the evil. Thus, we do gain character from suffering.  My thoughts: This is a very difficult book to read because Yancy dwells on quite a few tragic events in detail. However, the book has a strong message and is written with a very humble and personal air. Yancy impresses me with his intelligent observations and powerful examples. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in the question of why God allows suffering. I am eager to read more of Yancy's work.
mojo_turbo More than 1 year ago
This lenten season, I decided to teach the book of Job to my congregation, which means I took the obvious route and decided to think about "Why do bad things happen to good people?" Philip Yancy's new book "The Question that Never Goes Away" addresses this very primal question.  Why? Why do tsunamis happen and why do planes crash into buildings? Why do people die before their time? And why do gunmen storm into school yards and shoot little children? And then - if these things happen in our world - WHY does God allow them? WHY doesn't He stop them? WHY does it seem like there is so much evil in the world? Back in 1997 Yancey wrote a book called "Where is God when it hurts" and since that time he has been invited all across the globe to share his perspective on the all-loving God who allows human suffering. This new book, "The Question that Never Goes Away" is Yancy's sequel and his reflections since writing that first volume. Filled with relevant and recent topics, Yancey does a terrific job attempting to offer solace and comfort in a world that seems out of control. Yancey has an easy to read "story-tellers" voice and this would make a great gift for that certain someone in your life that is climbing a difficult mountain, or enduring a darkened road. Well recommended.