Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Shattered Dreams: God's Unexpected Pathway to Joy” as Want to Read:
Shattered Dreams: God's Unexpected Pathway to Joy
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Shattered Dreams: God's Unexpected Pathway to Joy

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  1,373 ratings  ·  116 reviews
Learn how to look through life's tragedies and see the lavish blessings God has for you. The Holy Spirit uses the pain of shattered dreams to help us discover our desire for God, to help us begin dreaming the highest dream. They are ordained opportunities for the Spirit first to awaken, then to satisfy our highest dream. ~~ Dr. Larry Crabb
Paperback, 224 pages
Published April 16th 2002 by WaterBrook Press (first published January 1st 2001)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Shattered Dreams, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Shattered Dreams

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.21  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,373 ratings  ·  116 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Shattered Dreams: God's Unexpected Pathway to Joy
Laura Betters
Sep 07, 2007 rated it it was ok
I found it mediocre at best. There were some reasonable thoughts - but they seemed obvious to me, (joy is not the same as happiness...pain points us to Christ because we need him most when we are hurting...etc.), while other points seemed to complicate the thesis he was trying to prove.

And my first problem is with his thesis: "Shattered Dreams are necessary for spiritual growth."

I disagree. BROKENESS is the necessity for spiritual growth...a broken and contrite heart. While a shattered dream M
Meredith Anne
Jan 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: People who are hurting.
This was exactly the right book at exactly the right time in my life.

Shattered Dreams gave me permission to freely process the grief of realizing that God owes me nothing, in spite of the ubiquitous teaching that "if I do this, then God will (or has to) do that for me". Nowhere in Scripture does God promise to fix my life up the way I wanted-- therefore I don't have to feel guilty about bad things happening in my life. Not only am I not in control and may never understand, it's okay because a God who
Ben Moser
Jul 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Maybe 98% of the Christian population is not ready to read this book. In so many ways it is everything that your sinful self does not want to hear. But this book puts our pain and suffering into perspective so that we may find our deepest longings and fulfillments in Christ and Christ alone.

This book is ESSENTIAL reading for the Christian who desires to find and truly encounter God.
Apr 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
dont read walking w god through pain and suffering. dont read its not supposed to be this way. dont read a grief observed dont read wounded healer dont even read cry of the soul. this is the only book so far that even makes a dent
Aug 31, 2014 rated it did not like it
I hated this book. He just says the same thing over and over. God shatters your dreams and you find something better, Joy. I don't feel his example of the story of Naomi and Ruth illustrates the point at all. God takes away her husband and son and then they are rescued by a rich relative and Ruth has children, etc. There is nothing in the story about their relationship with God. Yes they are both happy, they have been delivered from poverty. "Naomi has a son. They named him Obed. He was the fath ...more
Matt Burgess
May 05, 2010 rated it really liked it
We led a community group in our neighborhood. On September 17, 2007, a couple in our group lost their 11 month old baby in an accident at home. We grieved, we prayed, we celebrated life and then we listened as our group wanted to understand what had happened in relationship to God. So, we began a study of Dr. Larry Krabb's book Shattered Dreams. A roller coaster ride of emotion, enlightenment and human experience commenced and for almost three months we worked through understanding shattered dre ...more
Abbie Riddle
Jan 11, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Who hasn't experienced shattered dreams - moments when our lives feel as if they are falling off their axis, spinning out of control, crashing down at our feet. Who hasn't found themselves devastated and broken, spilled out and hurting, desperate for restoration and redemtpion. What is happiness- True contentment - Security - Blessing? Where does one find these things in this broken and stained world filled with disappointments and heartaches?

Larry Crabb bodly declares the compassion
Dec 22, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: giveaway
I received this book through LibraryThing's Early Reviewers program and I wasn't that excited. I find many Christian self-help books to be formulaic and oversimplified. Might I also point out that Christian self-help is a moronic classification since Christianity is all about Christ working in people unable to save themselves. So it was with great trepidation that I cracked open the cover and read the Author's Note and Introduction. "Not bad," I thought, "but I don't hold out much hope for the r ...more
Mary Ann
Mar 08, 2010 rated it really liked it

What I'm learning...

"Something bad happens. I hurt. I feel unhappy. I long to feel good. I ask God for help. I am resolved to feel better. I do whatever I can to make at least a few dreams come true. That is the way of the flesh.
Something bad happens. I hurt. I feel unhappy. I long to feel good. But I trust God. His pleasure matters more than mine. But His pleasure includes mine. I believe that. So I abandon myself to His pleasure. I live to please Him. I work hard and live responsib
Nov 03, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: religion
This book was a really interesting meditation on Naomi in the book of Ruth and the role of suffering in the Christian life. I enjoyed the parts about Ruth and Naomi the most, and appreciated the way the book rejected the notion that Christianity should bring wealth and comfort. The book also had intriguing thoughts about how one can strengthen a relationship with God even in suffering. I guess the three stars are because I find it difficult to praise suffering as much as the author seems to. I'm ...more
Jan 20, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
We used this book in a Bible study. It was either loved or hated. I hated it.

While reading the first chapter, it took everything in me not to throw that book across the room. Apparently the author has had problems with being angry with God and assumes his entire audience has suffered the same experience. I'm sure there are people that struggle with the issue, but not everyone.

Throughout the entire book, there were things I disagreed with.

I hated the book. If y
Jan 05, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This book really challenged the way I pray and how I see the difficulties that our family faces. Finished it and then immediately read the whole book again and took notes.
(Can I give a book 6 stars? If so, this one would have 6.)
Generally, I'm not a Larry Crabb fan. But, like any believer does, his faith, through his personal experiences which have drawn Him closer to the Lord, have deepened and reshaped his understanding and given him deeper wisdom about the workings of God in our lives. From this vantagepoint, he writes this excellent book. What does it mean when your dreams - your GOOD dreams like a healthy marriage or a meaningful ministry - are shatter
May 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: christian, 2018
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book was recommended to me and I was skeptical, largely because of the cliche looking cover and title of the book. It seemed a little melodramatic and unrealistic.

Any preconceived notions I had, I take them all back. This is truly one of the best books I have ever read.

Often times, when you go through hard times, well-intended family and friends push the notion that bad things happen because better things are coming. This fails to recognize that some "bad things" were once very
Casey D. Rodriguez
Mar 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
True Faith

1. The Journey to God will always, at some point, take us through darkness where life makes no sense. Life isn’t easy, it’s hard, sometimes very hard.

2. The felt absence of God is a gift to gratefully receive. During those seasons of darkness He is doing his deepest work in us.

3. Feeling is not the goal. When we feel bad, we have the opportunity to battle against the enemy within that keeps us from entering the Presence of God with no greater passion than to gl
Joanna Cook
Jun 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I gave this book 5 stars because it was life changing. Embracing shattered dreams and all the grief and loss that comes along with that doesn't seem like the pathway to joy nor does culture see it that way. However, Larry Crab does a wonderful job at helping us see how these can indeed bring us to joy by drawing us nearer to God. I think everyone should read this book because we have all experienced suffering in our lives and need hope that there is more!
Rebecca Kelly
Jun 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
Loved it.
Pam Leeper (Kutella)
Jan 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
I have come back to this book at several points in my life. Resetting realistic expectations but remaining optimistic in the unwavering love of God.
Sally Hanna
Jul 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Eye opening.. definitely worth reading and re-reading!
Jan 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This was an excellent book focusing on the book of Ruth. Highly recommend reading as it gives a great perspective and discussion on how facing challenges and pain can bring us into a closer relationship with our Heavenly Father if we are willing to allow ourselves to be vulnerable.
Jul 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A quick, good read for all writers. You will feel buoyed and validated in Goldberg’s hands.
Mar 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
Great book for thinking through deep Psalm-like pain, God, and man. It falls under seasonal literature in my opinion, as it spends most of its text on that first step of ascent - anthrocentric feeling. Read to the end and read with care as you move from pain to humility up the holy hill to deeper and richer desires of theocentric purposes.
Dec 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: larry-crabb
For anyone who is suffering loss of any kind - this book is truly a wonderful guide and is filled with so much truth. A paradigm changing book - God used this book to help me in a terribly difficult time in my life. I have recommended this book more than any other.
Aug 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This book is absolutely awesome! I felt like it was written for me. I never had a book answer my questions and raise new ones so thoroughly. Sheds amazing light and new meaning on the book of Ruth.

I have been in a period of disillusionment, wanting to know what God promises in the here and now. If you're wondering, "How do I find the faith that lets me see what is invisible, to passionately believe that He's always wonderfully and lovingly responsive when He seems so callous?," then
Dec 06, 2011 rated it it was amazing
July 2015 Re-reading this great book! My copy.

How did I bump into this book in the public library? I wasn't looking for it ... by the call number it must have been next to Francis Chan's Crazy Love, which was on my list of books to read, recommended by a friend.

Larry Crabb is not new to me. He's a good author. I just haven't been reading self-help books of any kind for awhile. The timing of reading this book is incredible, a definite 'God Thing'. I could have written this
Aug 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Anita by: Jayne
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rachelle Sperling
Jul 05, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Excellent material and clear delivery.

In Shattered Dreams Dr. Crabb takes an in-depth look at the story of Ruth and Naomi, the blessing to be found in the pain of shattered dreams and the path to finding the fulfillment of our deepest desire, which is also God's highest gift.

This is isn't some cold, academic delivery either. With honest questioning and personal example, Crabb answers the question, If you want to really discover all that God wants for your life, the best and most ful
Mar 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Possibly the best book I've read this year. I'd recommend it to anyone who is struggling with feeling like their dreams are out of reach, or are in the midst of feeling like a failure or dealing with lack of direction and satisfaction in their lives. It is a powerful reminder of the holiness and love of God that transcends any dreams we may have, and that our ultimate goal should be HIM not any dream, however "good." And perspective change to redirect our focus onto what He has for us with Him-- ...more
Sep 20, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: spirit
"Learn hot to look through life's tragedies and see the blessings God has for you."
"Shattered dreams are never random. They are always a pc of a larger puzzle, a chapter in a larger story."

Didn't work for me in light of Jenn and Mike's suffering. It didn't give Satan credit for world's evils and sicknesses. Plowed through most of book, about 180 pages, but couldn't finish.
And someone's going to teach on this in my Sunday school class? Please let me miss that class because I
« previous 1 3 4 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Journey of Desire: Searching for the Life We Always Dreamed of
  • Abba's Child: The Cry of the Heart for Intimate Belonging
  • Disappointment with God: Three Questions No One Asks Aloud
  • Celebration of Discipline: The Path to Spiritual Growth
  • Ruthless Trust: The Ragamuffin's Path to God
  • The Wounded Healer: Ministry in Contemporary Society
  • Calm My Anxious Heart
  • Sacred Rhythms: Arranging Our Lives for Spiritual Transformation
  • Victory Over the Darkness
  • More Than a Carpenter
  • The Holiness of God
  • One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are
  • The Blue Parakeet: Rethinking How You Read the Bible
  • The Sacred Romance Drawing Closer To The Heart Of God
  • In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day: How to Survive and Thrive When Opportunity Roars
  • Counterfeit Gods: The Empty Promises of Money, Sex, and Power, and the Only Hope that Matters
  • Mere Christianity
  • The Sacred Search: What If It's Not about Who You Marry, But Why?
See similar books…
Dr. Larry Crabb is a well-known psychologist, conference and seminar speaker, Bible teacher, popular author, and founder/director of NewWay Ministries. In addition to various other speaking and teaching opportunities, Dr. Crabb offers a weekend conference throughout the country entitled Life on the Narrow Road and a week-long School of Spiritual Direction held in Colorado Springs, CO. He currently ...more
“There’s never a moment in all our lives, from the day we trusted Christ till the day we see Him, when God is not longing to bless us. At every moment, in every circumstance, God is doing us good. He never stops. It gives Him too much pleasure. God is not waiting to bless us after our troubles end. He is blessing us right now, in and through those troubles. At this exact moment, He is giving us what He thinks is good.” 6 likes
“That day has come. God is now dealing with us in a new way. Our badness is no longer the obstacle to blessing. Nor is our goodness the condition for blessing.” 4 likes
More quotes…