10 Top Resources on Grief and Loss

A List by Jonathan Holmes



The BCC’s Book Lists are another contribution of the BCC’s Book Review page (along with book reviews, author interviews, and book video trailers). Crafted by members of our Book Review team, these Book Lists provide readers with an annotated and collated list of the most significant books in various categories related to biblical counseling, Christian living, and pastoral ministry.

Today’s BCC Book List provides a top ten list of books for dealing with grief and loss.

The Art of Dying by Rob Moll

This resource from Rob Moll is incredibly helpful. With chapters on funerals, death, dying, end-of-life choices and much more, Moll deals with a weighty topic in a manner which is both somber but also practical and biblical.

God’s Healing for Life’s Losses by Bob Kellemen, BMH Books

Don’t let the size of this book deceive you at all. Although small and brief—written in gift-book format—the truths Dr. Kellemen walks through are shared in a manner which is compassionate, pastoral, and Christ-centered. Each chapter includes poignant questions to be answered and reflected upon—both for individual use and small group interaction. A worthy and very valuable resource for every biblical counselor and for all who suffer loss.

A Grief Observed by C. S. Lewis

A list of this nature would be incomplete without this classic, short work from the beloved C.S. Lewis. Written after his wife’s death, Lewis reflects wisely and honestly on life and death, pain and suffering, grief and loss. His conclusions at the end of his journey are worth the read through this work.

The Hardest Sermons You’ll Ever Have to Preach by Bryan Chapell

Perhaps a surprising choice here, but one which every biblical counselor can benefit from. Chapell, in his eminently warm and inviting style, offers actual sermons on a host of difficult issues such as miscarriage, early infant loss, SIDS, cancer, murder, accidental death and much more. Each sermon brims with Scripture and hope in the living Christ.

Lament for a Son by Nicholas Wolterstorff

One of the best books on the topic of grief, suffering, and loss from the pen of one who wrestled deeply and theologically with the loss of his son. Wolterstorff’s thoughts and musings are raw and realistic, but filled with hope in the Suffering Christ. This will undoubtedly be a Christian classic for many generations.

O Love That Will Not Let Me Go by Nancy Guthrie

Guthrie assembles various short chapters from some of evangelical Christianity’s most luminous corners. Authors and contributors include John Piper, Martyn Lloyd-Jones, J.I. Packer, Timothy Keller, Joni Eareckson Tada and many more. Each chapter is unique and falls into one of four larger book divisions. Each individual essay is easily worked through with a counselee facing death or comforting someone who has experienced loss. Also recommended would Nancy’s companion book, Be Still, My Soul: Embracing God’s Purpose & Provision in Suffering.

A Shelter in the Time of Storm by Paul Tripp

Tripp in characteristic fashion takes Psalm 27 and offers devotional thoughts, poems, stories, and much more in this very digestible book. With 52 brief chapters, this book is something a counselee could work through on a daily basis.

When Your Family’s Lost a Loved One by Nancy GuthrieandDavid Guthrie

For a go-to resource on helping a family navigate rough waters following a death in the family, David and Nancy Guthrie are authors you will find yourself coming back to with frequency. David and Nancy Guthrie’s personal story of loss out of which their writing comes from is filled with personal hope. Each chapter includes an interview as well as helpful discussion questions.

Trusting God by Jerry Bridges

I’ve long considered this book a Christian classic for my generation. Borne out of Bridge’s loving care for his wife through her battle with cancer, Trusting God is Bridges at his best. Thoroughly biblical, eminently readable, Bridges encourages those struggling to place their trust in an all-wise, all-loving, sovereign God.

When God’s Children Suffer by Horatius Bonar

Horatius Bonar has given us a real gem in this book. From the cover, “A prayerful exploration of the reasons God may permit suffering in the life of one of his loved ones. There are practical suggestions on how to cope with the mystery and pain of personal suffering.”
 

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What additional books for dealing with grief and loss would you add to this list?