The Thing Beneath the Thing: What's Hidden Inside (and What God Helps Us Do About It)

The Thing Beneath the Thing: What's Hidden Inside (and What God Helps Us Do About It)

by Steve Carter
The Thing Beneath the Thing: What's Hidden Inside (and What God Helps Us Do About It)

The Thing Beneath the Thing: What's Hidden Inside (and What God Helps Us Do About It)

by Steve Carter


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We all have a surface self we present to the world, but our smiling faces often hide our pain that comes from unsuccessful attempts to find relief through harmful choices. How can we keep past wounds from damaging us? Learn to allow God to heal triggers, insecurities, and more so you can experience spiritual health and wholeness.

Every driver knows the importance of avoiding potholes when navigating a route. Besides the uncomfortable bump, they can create permanent damage to vehicles and endanger entire roadway systems.

The same is true of our lives. We all have potholes that have been formed by pain, trauma, or choices that we’ve made. Usually we find a quick fix, filling the hole with activities and even addictions disguised as culturally acceptable life choices. But before long, the hole is back—and often wider and deeper—waiting to catch us off-guard, which in the end creates even more permanent damage.

In The Thing Beneath the Thing, pastor Steve Carter asks the simple question, “How is life working for you?” He knows that potholes exist and that the longer we live disconnected from answering this question, the more we will fill those holes with harmful choices. The solution? Allow God to fill them with His grace and love so that we can discover the beauty of peace and wholeness He has for us.

The process lies in discovering our:

  • Triggers: the setup that sets us off
  • Hideouts: where we go to escape the pain of our story
  • Insecurities: the false stories we create about ourselves
  • Narratives: the false stories we create about others
  • Grace: the place where we discover how to become whole, holy, and spiritually healthy

Journey with a seasoned fellow traveler who has learned how to ask key questions that help us unlock the places where we’ve buried things. Then we can dig deep, invite healing, and learn new ways to operate so we can begin experiencing the life of freedom Jesus promised.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780785235538
Publisher: Nelson, Thomas, Inc.
Publication date: 08/10/2021
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 218,441
Product dimensions: 5.80(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Steve Carter is a pastor, speaker, author, podcast host, and the former lead teaching pastor of Willow Creek Community Church in Chicago. He hosts the Craft & Character podcast, where he helps people get better at the art and craft of communication while ensuring their character always leads the way. An avid sports fan, Steve has co-hosted with ESPN sports anchor Samantha Ponder, NFL player Sam Acho, and Trey Burton The Home Team Podcast, which unpacks the intersection between faith, culture, sports, and family. With a degree in Biblical Studies from Hope International University, Steve has a heart for the local church. He is currently a teaching pastor at Forest City Church in Elgin, IL, and often speaks for churches, conferences, events, camps, and retreats all over the country. Steve lives in Chicagoland with his wife, Sarah, and their two kids.

Table of Contents

Foreword Ann Voskamp xi

My Moment of Madness xvii

Part 1 The Setup That Sets You Off

1 Why Do I Do Those Things I Do? 3

2 Potholes, Triggers, and Responses 21

Part 2 Courageous Curiosity

3 Where We Go to Hide 39

4 When Identity Becomes Insecurity 53

5 From Insecurity to Envy 75

6 Biases That Drive Narratives 91

Part 3 Living Whole, Holy, and Spiritually Healthy

7 Let Grace Find You 115

8 Be Strong in Grace 131

9 It's Your Choice 147

10 The Power of Connection 167

Benediction 183

Acknowledgments 191

Notes 195

About the Author 201

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