Somewhere along the way, the Christianity you knew began to crumble. You began to suspect your faith was misplaced. Disillusionment set in. Churches hurt you. Their people failed you. Christian institutions were exposed as fake. And in it all, God was silent. Is He gone? Or is God really there, waiting for you to find Him instead of the counterfeits?
If you’re walking this difficult spiritual path, Lina AbuJamra understands you. After experiencing the near deconstruction of her own faith, Lina had to rebuild something more solid when the faith she once knew let her down. With her diagnostic style that comes from her training as an ER doc, Lina helps you grapple with questions like:
- Where is God in my pain?
- Is this how Christians are supposed to act?
- Why did my story end up this way?
- Is this the normal Christian life?
- Why is it so hard for Christians to love?
Let Fractured Faith help you find your way back to God. You just might discover that the real God has been waiting for you all along.
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About the Author
Lina ministers to singles through her Moody Radio show, Today's Single Christian, and is engaged in providing medical care and humanitarian help to Syrian refugees and others in disaster areas in the Middle East. Her ministry also provides spiritual retreats for women at The Hope Ranch. Learn more about her at www.livingwithpower.org.
Table of Contents
Introduction: My Story 15
Chapter 1 Where Is God in My Pain? 21
Chapter 2 Why Did My Story End Up This Way? 39
Chapter 3 Why Cant I Overcome Sin in My Life? 55
Chapter 4 Is This How Christians Are Supposed to Act? 73
Chapter 5 Is God Really Fair? 91
Chapter 6 Is This the Normal Christian Life? 107
Chapter 7 Why Can't I Feel More of God in My Life? 119
Chapter 8 Why Is It Hard for Christians to Love? 135
Chapter 9 Is It Supposed to Be This Hard? 149
Appendix: Deconstruction Diagram 161
What People are Saying About This
Praise for Fractured Faith
“In Fractured Faith, Lina shows us that doubt, loss, grief, pain, questions, and disappointments can ultimately lead to a strengthened and deepened faith. Lina gives expression to much of the angst that many of us feel but fear naming. Her transparency, authenticity, and biblical insight lead us to a place of ultimate hope and trust in Jesus, and His never-failing love for us.”—CHRISTINE CAINEFounder, A21 & Propel Women
“In Fractured Faith, Lina AbuJamra—ER doc by training and temperament—narrates her painful winnowing through a pastor’s betrayal, a church’s failure, and a lineup of wolves ready to devour her and whatever other sheep remained. Lina’s journey is messy. Some of the things Lina says in this book make me cringe. Survival comes in fits. It grabs at the dark and grabs at the throat. And in the midst of this, we see grace: ‘the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment’ (2 Peter 2:9). Fractured Faith points to the glory of God in our weakness and to the Lord’s power to keep His true sheep in the grace that we need to finish the race well. Even when our pastors do not measure up. Even when our churches do not measure up. Even when friends prove themselves to be wolves. Even when we do not measure up. Christ always measures up. And that’s the point.”—ROSARIA CHAMPAGNE BUTTERFIELDAuthor, speaker, homeschool mother
“Fractured Faith is a special book because it details the pain and promise of what it means to be human. Through unpacking her own story, Lina wrestles with many of the deepest questions in one hand while also doing what she does best: holding God’s promises in the other and helping to acknowledge and reframe the pain in a profoundly new light.”—STEVE CARTERPastor, author of The Thing Beneath the Thing
“We’ve all heard stories of people who have left the church or their faith due to painful circumstances within the body of believers, with people they know and even their experiences with God. If you’ve ever found yourself in this place and felt like you were too hurt to think about beginning again, I truly hope you will pause to read Fractured Faith during this part of your story. In this stunning book, Lina wisely gives voice to the ache many feel. Don’t miss this one.”—LYSA TERKEURST#1 New York Times bestselling author and president of Proverbs 31 Ministries
“Stunningly honest. Brilliantly written. Biblically insightful. The questions Lina asks, as she takes us on her journey of deconstructing and then reconstructing her faith, are our questions as well if we dare to be that vulnerable. If you have ever grappled with suffering, doubt, and disappointment in the Christian life, tempted to abandon Christianity completely, read this book. Fractured Faith will inspire you to trust Christ in the middle of your story and will reignite your faith. Who should read this book? Everyone I know!”—VANEETHA RENDALL RISNERAuthor of Walking through Fire: A Memoir of Loss and Redemption
“You’re not crazy. When your faith is fractured, it’s a pain like no other. Through the honest and reflective words of this book, Lina helps you see your brokenness for what it is. But you won’t stay where you are. God uses Lina to breathe hope into hurt and revive souls. Fractured Faith isn’t going to fix you, it’s going to start a new fire within you. Hold on!”—KARL CLAUSONPastor at 180 Chicago Church and radio host of Karl & Crew Mornings
“Lina AbuJamra has written bravely and hopefully in this book. As she’s rehearsed betrayals, disappointments, doubts, even her own sin, she’s asked a painfully familiar question: Where is God when the lights go out? Retracing a large swath of the biblical story, Lina reminds her readers that God uses every wound, every wilderness, for good.”—JEN POLLOCK MICHELAuthor of A Habit Called Faith and Surprised by Paradox
“I love Lina’s passion, Lina’s openness, and Lina’s constant pursuit of Jesus through His Word. That’s what comes through in this deeply encouraging book.”—NANCY GUTHRIEAuthor and Bible teacher
“One of my biggest burdens I am currently experiencing as a pastor is watching the ever-growing phenomenon of ‘deconstruction’ when it comes to one’s faith. I am so grateful that Lina AbuJamra is taking this matter head-on by writing Fractured Faith. As the subtitle of the book states, I hope God uses this labor of love to help others find their way back to God in an age of deconstruction. This book was also very beneficial for me as a pastor in understanding how to minister in this new reality. We need this book and I am thankful we now have it, due to Lina’s careful, caring, and convicting words. I highly recommend you read Fractured Faith.”—DEAN INSERRAFounding and Lead Pastor of City Church Tallahassee
“As both a writer and reader, I encounter a lot of books, but rarely do they touch me the way Lina AbuJamra’s Fractured Faith has. Honest yet tender. Simple yet profound. Lina’s words are a faithful guide to those who’ve lost their way or whose faith feels like it’s crumbling. Here is hope.” —HANNAH ANDERSONAuthorof Humble Roots and Turning of Days
“Written with a beautiful balance of grace and truth, this book was a balm for my wounded heart. Because Lina has walked the path of deep disappointment and doubt, she is a capable guide for those whose faith has been fractured. With a physician’s expertise, she invites broken people to the only One who can free us from pain. For anyone wrestling with God or already walking away from the Christian faith, let this book be a lighthouse to help illuminate the way home to the heart of a faithful God whose love is deeper than we can ever imagine.”—DORENA WILLIAMSONBridge builder and bestselling author of ColorFull
“Lina AbuJamra intimately harnesses the pain, fear, and anger that many Christians have felt after the faith bubble has burst. As a leader, she models a brazen authenticity that challenges others to own their part in those emotions. As a believer, she makes a compelling case for faith, more true and more pure than previously experienced in the church. She plainly invites us to see God in the midst of our pain and let go of the pain caused by His people, and perhaps in doing all this, she illuminates a path for countless humans to find their way back to the God who heals.”—CB BARTHLOWPastor, son, brother, husband, and father, Denver, CO
“In Fractured Faith, Lina verbalizes all the feelings and thoughts about my faith, Jesus, and the church that I couldn’t seem to personally verbalize over the years. The words of this book helped to unravel the hurt of the past, strengthen my foundation and reignite my passion for Jesus.”—LESLIE, 33, physical therapist, hurt by the church
“Fractured Faith is like a lifeline thrown out to a soul drowning in doubt, despair, difficulty, disillusionment, and disappointment, providing a rescue, not with more theological clichés, but with truth shared openly from a heart touched, and still tender, to God’s saving grace. Writing with the perfect balance of personal story, memorable illustrations, and scriptural text, the Lord Himself will invite you to come broken and rest in His presence, allowing His truth to settle over you.” —JOY, 58, homemaker, restored and redeemed
“God uses our brokenness and suffering so we can recover and tell our story with the new understanding that we could only be made whole through the grace and glory of Jesus. Lina’s story of brokenness and separation from the church is her testimony of God’s grace. If your life is a mess and you feel alone and you want to walk away from God or away from your Christian connections, read this book first. God wants to use your struggle to build a stronger personal relationship with you.”—KRISTEN, 55, CFO, Bible Study Fellowship group leader, Prison Ministry volunteer
“My soul found a safe place in these beige margins. If this Carpenter she speaks of is real, I want to find Him, too.” —ABBIE, unsteady saint, tired homeschool mom
“You should buy Fractured Faith because it’s a truly honest conversation about God, the church, the people in it, and finding our way back to His light when we need it the most.”—DALE, 58, Christian CEO, always seeking answers