Over the years, I have noticed that the Reformed folks have a robust doctrine of sin, but (in my opinion) a fairly thin doctrine of suffering. And this is true in the broader evangelical world as well.
We tend to think of sin as simply impacting behavior or ethical choices. And we sometimes forget that sin also impacts every aspect of creation. We live in a fallen, broken world. So, we should not be surprised when our lives are affected by that fallen, broken world.
As a result of this blind spot, most people simply don’t know how to suffer or grieve biblically. Even more, most people don’t know how to minister to a person who is suffering.
For these reasons, I was thankful to host David and Nancy Guthrie on the RTS Charlotte campus a couple of weeks ago. They came to speak on the topic of “What Grieving People Wish You Knew.”
And they know about suffering themselves, having experienced the death of two of their children.
Nancy is a well-known writer and speaker and the author numerous books, most recently What Grieving People Wish You Knew About What Really Helps and What Really Hurts. David publishes children’s musicals through his company, Little Big Stuff Music.
You should also know that Nancy is a RTS student! She is working on her degree through our Global Campus.
Below is a video of Nancy’s talk on grief and suffering, followed immediately by my interview of the Guthries together. I know it will be helpful for many people struggling with this issue.
If you want to learn more about topics like grief, suffering, and depression, consider the RTS Charlotte degree program in biblical counseling. Our program trains our students to have a biblical, Reformed understanding of these critical issues and how to help people deal with them.