Hope When It Hurts

Biblical reflections to help you grasp God's purpose in your suffering

Thirty biblical meditations inviting women to see how God is caring for them, growing them, and even using them, in times of suffering.

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Hurt is real. But so is hope.

Kristen and Sarah have walked through, and are walking in, difficult times. So these thirty biblical reflections are full of realism about the hurts of life—yet overwhelmingly full of hope about the God who gives life.

This book will gently encourage and greatly help any woman who is struggling with suffering—whether physical, emotional or psychological, and whether for a season or for longer. It is a book to buy for yourself, or to buy for a member of your church or friend. For anyone who is hurting, this book will give hope, not just for life beyond the suffering, but for life in the suffering.

Each chapter contains a biblical reflection, with questions and prayers, and a space for journaling.

Product details


  • Intro
  • 1. The Gospel Makes a Difference
  • 2. Christ’s Power in our Weakness
  • 3. Affliction and Hardship
  • 4. Anxiety and Worry
  • 5. Pain is Real
  • 6. Peace amid Confusion
  • 7. The Detours of Life
  • 8. When God seems Silent
  • 9. The not-surprise of Persecution
  • 10. The Opportunity of Suffering
  • 11. Coming to the End of Yourself
  • 12. An Alternative to Numbness
  • 13. He Suffered too
  • 14. What is in the Heart
  • 15. Comfort
  • 16. Joy
  • 17. Freedom
  • 18. Patience
  • 19. Contentment
  • 20. This is not All There is
  • 21. Momentary
  • 22. Your Earthly Home
  • 23. Your Heavenly Body
  • 24. You are Not Alone and you are Not Unloved
  • 25. God is Faithful
  • 26. On Feeling Angry and Bitter
  • 27. Pour out your Heart
  • 28. Walk by Faith
  • 29. God is at Work
  • 30. You will See His Face


Bonus Chapters

(407.5 KB)


Author Kristen Wetherell, Sarah Walton
ISBN 9781784980733
Format Hardback
First published 2017
Dimensions 5.1" x 7.8"
Language US English
Pages 256
Publisher The Good Book Company

I had not finished reading the introduction to this book before I was making a mental list of friends that I knew would find it a balm to their weary hearts. Kristen and Sarah minister to fellow travelers on the road of suffering, out of the resources they have received on their own journey, from the God of all comfort, grace, and hope.

Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth

Author, host/teacher of Revive Our Hearts

Kristen and Sarah have let us in to listen to their meditations in the midst of pain and limitation. They've opened up their hearts, their stories, and their Word-filled words. From our various contexts, we will all learn as we listen. I'm grateful for this book's faithful call to lift up our eyes to a God of mercy who loves and saves.

Kathleen Nielson

Director of Women's Initiatives, The Gospel Coalition

This is a wonderful, vulnerable and honest book, and I highly recommend it to anyone who needs the good news of Jesus in a difficult time. Kristen and Sarah have suffered immensely, but both of them know that our only hope is found in Jesus. In Hope When It Hurts, they have labored to encourage our souls with the gospel, give us space to grieve our loss, and turn to the only source of real hope. I'm praying God uses this book in extraordinary ways!

Dave Furman

Senior Pastor of Redeemer Church of Dubai; author of Being There: How to Love Those Who are Hurting

Independent reviews

"So many words to encourage my aching heart"

Ruth Clemence, Mum in Zone One, March 28th 2017

As I turned the pages of the book I thought ‘Yes! They really get suffering…’ They ‘get’ suffering because both the authors ‘are’ suffering. Present tense. They are writing it in the storm.... continue reading


A gem of a book

Clarina's Contemplations, Clarina's Contemplations, April 3rd 2017

It is easy to read, conversational and yet deeply theological, and the genuiness of their faith, scarred and battle-weary though it is, drips through every sentence with raw honesty.... continue reading

A really precious resource

Catherine Brookes, Mum in Zone One, April 10th 2017

In this broken world, we should expect to suffer. That’s why I want to recommend this book to you, Hope When it Hurts. It’s a series of short chapters meditating on 2 Corinthians Chapters 4 and 5. You could read one a day, or read big chunks at a time. Either way, I think it’s a really precious resource.... continue reading

Customer reviews

“A wonderful read”

My Grandchildren have told me that I should always read book reviews before purchasing a book. That turned out to be good advice. So good in fact that it has motivated me to write a review about any book that expands my understanding of something. “Hope when it hurts” did that in Spades. I am a male, a Christian and over 80. If I have had any pain in my 80 plus years of life I have no memory of it. I have and do share the pain that any of my love ones have to live with. I have often questioned the justice of God’s will when he allows good people to suffer. Kristen and Sarah’s “Hope when it hurts” gave me a more positive perspective on this subject. It is a great read, a “biblical” adverb of sorts and belongs in every person’s library.


“Not only lifts us in our pain, but also equips us with truth to help others!”

In vulnerable transparency, the authors share truth that not encourages and only lifts our spirits, but also equips us with the truth in God's Word to share that truth with the hurting world around us. I highly recommend this book for small group study as well.


“Truly inspiring and hope-bringing”

As someone who also battles chronic stomach pain, I have been able to relate to this as well as be inspired and filled with hope when it feels like I have nothing else to cling to.


“Powerful Reminders for Anyone Suffering”

This book truly refreshes the weary soul, as it is filled with God's words, His promises as we suffer. The authors were humble, honest, and so encouraging as they shared their stories and how God has ministered to their hearts through the difficulties they've both endured. The format of the book is nice, the chapters are perfect for personal devotions. This book would make a wonderful gift for a friend who is going through a trial. So thankful for the way God has used these women's pain to bring about His glory and for how their faith has grown in the process. Loved it.


“Excellent Read!”

This book is helpful in any season of life. Kristen & Sarah have crafted a Biblically-sound masterpiece that will be my go-to book for giving to girlfriends of all ages this year. Drawing from their own personal battles, Kristen and Sarah draw you closer to Christ through story and Scripture. You'll return to it again and again through the years for encouragement and hope. Perfect for times of personal devotion and reflection. A true A+ in the realm of women's Christian literature!


“Seeing Gospel hope in the storm”

I loved the look and feel of this books as soon as it landed in my hands.

I know the cliche "You should never judge a book by its cover" but I was really excited about the cover and now that I have read it I'm delighted with the book.

Delighted seems a strange choice of words to use on a book about suffering but it was so encouraging to know that despite the challenges that others go through, how they are able to come through them in the most amazing ways due to living a life that totally trusts in God.

It's definitely one that I will keep on my shelf and refer to again and again. It would be a great book to do as a one to one with someone, even a none Christian as the questions and prayer points at the end of each chapter would open up easily to gospel conversations. This book is really accessible to those who may not yet know God. The journalling pages at the end of each chapter really helped me (using the questions were great prompts) to help me think through what I was going though. I have never been known to journal hugely but I really got into it and at times found that I had more to say than I thought!

I have bought a copy for a friend and I'm excited about how much it will encourage her too!


“Left me truly encouraged”

We’ve been in a hard time with a lot of hurts recently and hope is something that is great to have guidance on.

Authors Kristen Wetherell and Sarah Walts have written 30 biblical reflections designed to remind you that there is hope in the middle of a hard life circumstance. They know what they are speaking about. Both women suffer from Lymes disease which, has not only caused their own bodies to fail them at times, but has also lead to family challenges.

“We wrote this book for you, to point you to hope, because there’s more to our suffering than meets the eye. This book is about the God who offers hope, even joy, in suffering. It’s a journey through 2 Corinthians 4 and 5, where we see that God wants to give us hope not just beyond our hurts but in our hurts; that he wants us to see how he is able to work in and through suffering and ultimately give us himself.”

The chapters include personal stories, scripture, and questions to journal responses to. The chapters include insightful explanations about the passages. I think the think I love the most is that the book in concentrated on a specific section of scripture.

You don’t have to take my word for how insightful and encouraging the message is in Hope When it Hurts!


“A scenic hike through suffering”

This book is like going on a scenic hike through suffering alongside a dear friend—one who not only knows you well but thoughtfully takes time to point out everything from the smallest, most intricate details to the grandest, breathless view from the top. The chapters are rich in truth yet conversational. This book helped me grasp scripture about suffering in a new and inspiring light. I feel like I could fill my whole home with these excerpts and scriptures as constant reminders to persevere in my suffering. As the authors note, “(Paul) wrote from a prison cell, not from an ivory tower.” Kristen and Sarah have done the same, letting us into their view from the valley. This is a must-read for the person who loves Christ, and for anyone struggling to understand how and why a good God could possibly allow suffering.


“Beautiful truth to hang onto”

This book is filled with beautiful truths from God's Word, and it ministered to every part of me. I loved the transparency of the authors, and their eloquence in bringing me to the very core of my need...a life dependent on the Lord Jesus Christ. Such an encouragement, not only for those hurting, but for everyone. The book itself if gorgeous, I'll definitely be buying more to give as gifts.


“Perspective Shifting Book on Suffering”

I can't say enough good things about this book. This book is changing my world view on pain and suffering! We ALL suffer - physically, emotionally, short-term, long-term. This book lovingly and patiently shifts your view of suffering from a self-focused, hopeless, discouraged view to a gospel centered, hope-filled, purposeful view of the pain we live with. I really appreciate the reflective questions at the end of each chapter. They help me to journal through my thoughts, attitudes, and despair and point me toward grace and hope. The prayers at the end of each chapter are also helpful because sometimes I just don’t know what to pray or really don’t have the emotional energy. This book will be a constant resource through the ups and downs of this life. Thank you Sarah and Kristen for standing in the gap for me and for being the compass that always points to Jesus as I journey through my pain and suffering.


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