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Glorious Ruin: How Suffering Sets You Free

4.21  ·  Rating Details  ·  945 Ratings  ·  101 Reviews
In this world, one thing is certain: Everybodyhurts.Suffering may take the form of tragedy, heartbreak, or addiction. Or it could be something more mundane (but no less real) like resentment, loneliness, or disappointment. But there’s unfortunately no such thing as a painless life. InGlorious Ruin, best-selling author Tullian Tchividjian takes an honest and refreshing look ...more
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published October 1st 2012 by David C. Cook (first published September 1st 2012)
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Is God a Moral Monster? by Paul CopanGlorious Ruin by Tullian TchividjianMiracles by Tim StaffordJulian of Norwich by Amy Frykholm
iMonk Book Club 2012
2nd out of 4 books — 1 voter
Kingdom, Grace, Judgment by Robert Farrar CaponHammer of God by Bo GiertzEden and Afterward by William McDavidThis American Gospel by Ethan RichardsonOne Way Love by Tullian Tchividjian
Mockingbird Theology 2014
22nd out of 26 books — 2 voters

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Community Reviews

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Marta Woodward
Our youth Sunday school group went through this book. It's written by the grandson of Billy Graham and senior pastor at Corral Ridge Church in Florida. I wouldn't say that reading it gave me any shattering insight into the value of suffering, but it did enrich my notions about how suffering is perceived by secular culture, and how it's handled by those around us, including well-meaning Christians. In the former case, Tchividjian discusses the "Oprahfication" of suffering and describes why suffer ...more
Oct 02, 2012 Samantha rated it liked it
Whilst I enjoyed Glorious Ruin, I didn't LOVE it as I thought I would.

Tchividjian focuses a lot on the difference in a theology of glory and that of the cross. Standing in God's arms enveloped by His love while admitting the pain and tragedies that life brings us is the theology of the cross. This was the part of the book that I took most heart from, however the constant mention of minimizing suffering and either "getting over it" or embracing God's grace wore me down.

Tchividjian references the
I don't think I have the words to express how much I appreciate this book. Like a cup of cold water on a scorching day it has brought me relief and comfort. I thoroughly recommend it.
Apr 18, 2016 Rachel rated it liked it
I came across this book after a friend of mine shared how much he was enjoying reading Tullian Tchividian's writing. I'm so grateful for that, because this book turned out to be on just the topic I was needing to read about.
Tchividjian has taken on such a big, important topic with honesty, grace, and truth. He brings understanding and compassionate faith into the tragedy of human suffering, while also completely demolishing viewpoints that stand in condemnation of suffering people. That means a
Gail Welborn
Dec 19, 2012 Gail Welborn rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviews

The theme of Glorious Ruin, by Billy Graham’s grandson, Tullian Tchividjian’s is pain, suffering, and God’s grace, where he writes, “Pain is unavoidable…” and no one is exempt. The recent Connecticut heartbreak illustrates a tragic example. Since everyone suffers at some time in their life “…it’s not a question of if but when” suffering occurs. Instead of questioning the “how” and “why” of suffering, Tchividjian’s unique focus is the “Who.”

The book expanded on a sermon series Tullian preached fr
Craig Hurst
Dec 03, 2012 Craig Hurst rated it really liked it
There are a myriad of books that deal with both the theological and practical aspects of human suffering. Suffering is a part of the human experience and all humans are looking for answers and explanations. There are many questions that people ask in the midst of their own suffering and in response to the suffering of others. Why did this happen to me? Why did God allow this to happen? Why didn’t God stop this from happening? Doesn’t God care? There are many what and why questions to ask in the ...more
Cynthia Vogel
Jan 19, 2013 Cynthia Vogel rated it really liked it
Replete with examples and quotes from a multiplicity of sources, Tchividjian has written a masterfull treatise on suffering. Focusing not on the "Why" of suffering but on the "Who" Pastor Tchividjian has reiterated his message from his former book "Jesus+NOthing=Everything". The good news? Gospel. Suffering falls by the wayside in the light of the wonder of what Christ has accomplished for us on the cross.

However, I found this book much harder to follow than the previously mentioned book of thi
Alex Hackney
Sep 24, 2013 Alex Hackney rated it it was ok
Shelves: non-fiction
I'm not finished with this book yet, but so far I've been offended and disappointed.

He's extremely repetitive and the book is entirely too long for the few points he's making. Repetition can be good until it makes you want to throw the book across the room.

I have one main issue so far, and for me it is a HUGE issue.

At one point he makes the point that suffering is not always an indicator of some unconfessed sin, lack of faith or love for God, or the like. He writes against the idea of a "this
Jul 26, 2014 K B rated it really liked it
Good read - Tullian get it right
Mylon Pruett
Mar 10, 2015 Mylon Pruett rated it liked it
Shelves: spirituality
Good, interesting book that talks to the "purpose" of suffering. I say interesting because it seems like the book is only partly about suffering. In general I would say about half the book is spent talking to the presence of God in life. To be clear this is a very theological book, for instance it spends a good deal of time discussing the difference between the theology of the cross and the theology of grace.

I did enjoy the time Tullian spent touching on the fact that minimizing someones suffer
Sean Post
Mar 10, 2014 Sean Post rated it it was amazing
I've never read anything from Tchividjian before but knowing his background, I anticipated that this book would not only highlight the sovereignty of God but potentially postulate the concept that God actually ordains suffering and evil in our lives. My expectations were exploded not only by the author's helpful perspective but by his avoidance of the philosophical speculation that typifies the discussion of theodicy.

The author highlights the myriad of ways in which we moralize, minimize, and se
Apr 29, 2014 Sarah rated it it was amazing
Wow. Just "wow". I've read other books on suffering, but this is the first time that I've wanted to start one of them over again as soon as I had finished it. In part, this is likely because I just really need the message of this book right now. But in another way, since the book is about soaking up the truth of the gospel into our pain-frequented lives, I think it is a message that is always needed, because nothing is more crucial than the gospel taking over our hearts and minds.

Some good quote
Feb 24, 2013 Debbie rated it it was amazing
I can agree after reading this book I can say "Uncle!" just as well. I am glad suffering was not graded by degree and Tullian doesn't give us an outline of how to suffer like "a good Christian". This got to the heart of it, and it broke my heart as well as gave it more hope. Thanks Pastor!
Isaiah Jesch
Jul 21, 2014 Isaiah Jesch rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned
Pastor Tullian Tchividjian writes excellently on a very practical topic here in this book. I found his work to be insightful, helpful, and challenging. I was able to also sit under Pastor Tullian speaking on this topic at an event in St. Louis, MO and though his sermon covered the major ideas, the book puts in many helpful details that can't be fully explored in an hour sermon. The concepts taught in this book are incredibly helpful, if one understands and applies them. I would recommend this bo ...more
Feb 10, 2014 Terri rated it it was amazing
Shelves: spiritual
If you are a human being; you will suffer. If you are a Christian; you will still suffer.

Tullian Tchividjian allows us to see that it's okay to say that the suffering that we endure is very hard- no sugarcoating Christian speak- it's hard and we don't have to minimize it just because we claim Christ as our Savior.

The other point Tchividjian encourages the reader about is that suffering is not always a result of bad morals, bad decisions, sin.

And as the great title suggests, God even uses the suf
Jan 17, 2013 Kara rated it it was amazing
I've read several books on the problem of suffering and pain in this world that have really impacted me. I've found that our views on pain and suffering often reveal quite a bit about what we really believe about God. This is one area where the rubber really meets the road when it comes to our faith. Tullian Tchividjian is one of my favorite teachers, and I know he's been through his share of difficulties in life, so I eagerly looked forward to reading his latest book Glorious Ruin: How Sufferin ...more
Andrew Barlow
Feb 13, 2013 Andrew Barlow rated it liked it
I only read a few chapter of this book. Enough to get the gist. I like Tchividjian. I extreme Lutheran approach to everything is actually a helpful counter balance to the Reformed world that I find myself in. I need to hear the radical freeness of grace a lot more. Tchividjian warns in the book against typical tendencies to moralize, instrumentalize, and in all other ways, minimize suffering. Suffering sucks. But God is present with us in the midst of it. And that, according to Tchividjian, is r ...more
Dec 23, 2013 Melissa rated it really liked it
The United States Church has much to learn from Tullian Tchividjian's thoughts on suffering. While the book is not as intellectually stimulating as those of Timothy Keller or as artfully written as those of Elisabeth Elliot, Glorious Ruin is an important book. It meets us where we are, confronts our culture's false theologies, and gives hope to the sufferer. He knows how to share a message simply as does his grandfather, Billy Graham, which is important because teachings of suffering need to be ...more
Noah W
Oct 05, 2013 Noah W rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2013
Who, not why or how.

So many times we approach the subject of suffering asking why suffering occurs or how can suffering positively impact us? Tchividjian suggests that we should really be asking about "who" is behind the suffering. I believe that we can and should explore the theology answers the why and how questions, but I totally agree that focusing on God first (who) will lead to a more solid understanding behind the pain experienced on earth.

The primary example used is Job. We see that Job
Christel Lim
Oct 06, 2012 Christel Lim rated it really liked it
It's full of theological references and authors mentioned. What is outstanding is the theology of glory vs the theology of the cross. I believe there are simpler ways to explain this. Anyone who didn't study theology like myself, would be a little irritated or aggravated (except that i had an appetite for it having been aggravated and irritated the same by jurisprudence before) by the peppering of it throughout the book while trying to understand what the author is saying. I like the back part o ...more
Dec 10, 2012 Debbi rated it it was amazing
A great, well grounded, perspective on how God meets us in suffering, transforming us into His Likeness, drawing our hearts close to His, allowing us to yield to Him as we bear our cross and learn to trust Him rather than our own sufficiency when we are truly powerless to change our own circumstances. Wanted to share a weighty passage unpacking real encouragement when illusions fall:
"We would rather die in dread / Than climb the cross of the moment / And let our illusions die" WH Auden...Luther
Kevin Thompson
Oct 08, 2012 Kevin Thompson rated it it was amazing
Shelves: christian-living
Title: Glorius Ruin: How Suffering Sets You Free
Author: Tullian Tchividjian
Publisher: David C. Cook
Publishing Year: 2012
Pages: 208
My Rating: 5 out of 5 (1 meaning I hated the book, 5 meaning I loved the book)

When I first order this book for review, my main reason for choosing this particular title was because of the name of the author – Tullian Tchividjian. I have to admit, I get swept up into the hype of big name preachers and authors. Yes, it is quite superficial. However, this book’s content
Amy  Katherine Brown
Feb 06, 2013 Amy Katherine Brown rated it it was amazing
EVERYONE who is a believer in Jesus Christ and God the Father SHOULD READ THIS BOOK- whether you've suffered terrible tragedies or just suffer through daily annoyances.

Having been living in the midst of tragedy after tragedy for the past 4 years (including the death of our infant son, the death of my dad, the loss of the rest of my biological family - and that was just in the first year when things started "going downhill"; to my husband losing his job after 12 years and several promotions w th
Jan 12, 2016 Johnvano rated it really liked it
Shelves: christian
The theme is suffering, but the comparison Tchividjian makes here is between the theology of the cross and the theology of glory, a significant difference.

To live with the cross of Jesus Christ in mind is to see all of life through His suffering and what it achieves for us. To recognize suffering as something God often uses to conform us to His likeness. While the theology of glory is more about triumph over adversity, the stubborn idea that "the best is yet to come" or suffering as a means to
Oct 30, 2013 Ginny rated it liked it
In pain and suffering, we often make the mistake of dwelling to long on the question "why" and never getting on to the question "who". Christ is the "who" in our suffering. We may never understand the why, but that is far less important than the person of Christ and knowing who are God is to us when we suffer.

That's the basic premise of Tchividjian's new book. A very worthy endeavor, and the book is certainly worth the time. Even if only as an exercise to examine your own misconceptions and bad
Julie Biles
Nov 12, 2013 Julie Biles rated it it was ok
Oh my! How does one review such a book? Tullian explains that this book started out as a series of sermons he preached on the book of Job following a very painful season in his life. I have listened to those sermons entitled "the Gospel of Suffering". But this book is different. Maybe I was expecting to read the words I had already heard.
The book is concise and saturated with Gospel drenched nuggets that must be slowly and carefully processed so they might be digested. I appreciated the many qu
Benoit Guillot
Apr 09, 2015 Benoit Guillot rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Pour ceux touchés par quelque souffrance que ce soit (soyons honnêtes, ça nous touche tous!), voici un livre qui expose QUI est Dieu dans le contexte de la souffrance et qui conduit le croyant à embracer l'évangile de son Dieu Sauveur quant tout est terriblement sombre. Basé sur le livre de Job, ce livre saura encourager quiconque a le coeur lourd et guidera son coeur à adorer le Dieu de l'évangile!
Jul 21, 2013 台耀 rated it it was amazing
The author makes it clear that suffering and storms in life inevitable as a result of sin.

Suffering usually comes when what we treasure most is taken away from us, thus resulting in pain. Be it out health, our wealth our security, our welfare, our loved ones, etc. in a way, suffering reveals the nature of our hearts and in turn the things we have placed immense value in in our lives, so much so that we are threatened when they are taken away from us.

When we come to a point when all is stripped
Apr 26, 2016 TonyB rated it liked it
I would like to give this book 3.5 stars. It started out as a 5 star then dropped to a 3 somewhere in the middle. But, I did love the end. By the end I mean the first footnote at the end of the book...this reference seems to crystallize what Tulian was trying to say throughout the book"

" inane anthropomorphism..."

So, we attempt to humanize God and interpret his motives and actions based on our understanding as though he had human characteristics that are as limited as ours.

"...unless one
Carrie Bee
Apr 18, 2013 Carrie Bee rated it really liked it
Wow. This is a beautifully written book about the reality of pain in this life and how we deal with it. Tullian is incredibly honest about his own pain and the pain that he has witnessed in the lives of others. He really makes the reader think about pain/suffering in light of the Gospel of Jesus and how we handle those situations with a Savior who knows what it feels like. I am so thankful to have a friend like Jesus who will be with me through it all and will understand. This book was a gift fr ...more
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Tchividjian is the grandchild of Reverend Billy Graham & Ruth Bell Graham & the son of Gigi Graham Tchividjian.

William Graham Tullian Tchividjian (pronounced cha-vi-jin) is the Senior Pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. A Florida native, he is a visiting professor of theology at Reformed Theological Seminary and a grandson of Billy and Ruth Graham. Tullian
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“God is not interested in what you think you should be or feel. He is not interested in the narrative you construct for yourself, or that others construct for you. Rather, He is interested in you, the you who suffers, the you who inflicts suffering on others, the you who hides, the you who has bad days (and good ones). And He meets you where you are.” 17 likes
“Information is seldom enough to heal a wounded heart.” 13 likes
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