By Vivian Bricker, Crosswalk.com
When we are brokenhearted, it is common for us to turn away from God, but it is crucial for us to turn to God at these times. We must remind ourselves that we are never truly alone because God is always with us (Hebrews 13:5). Through the good times and the bad times, God's mercy and grace remain the same (Psalm 23). During a period of being brokenhearted, devotion books can help us find healing, give us peace, and direct our focus back to the Lord.
Let's check out five devotion books that speak to the brokenhearted:
1. When Jesus Speaks to a Hurting Heart By Emily Biggers
My sister bought When Jesus Speaks To A Hurting Heart by Emily Biggers for me as a Christmas gift a few years after our mom passed away. If you are brokenhearted, this devotion helps validate your feelings, but it also pushes you to see past the pain. Each day contains a Bible passage and devotion to reflect upon. Reading and reflecting upon the Bible passage helps to point you back to Jesus and how He is always with you. We often think we are alone when we are brokenhearted, but we are never alone because God is always with us. This devotion helps us realize this truth.
I recommend journaling along with this devotion, and recording your thoughts and feelings in a separate notebook. In this way, you’ll be able to look back and see your growth in future years. When Jesus Speaks to a Hurting Heart helped me feel less alone in my struggle, and it helped me turn to God in the heartbreak. Becoming brokenhearted at some point in life is inevitable, but we can work through the pain by turning to Jesus, praying to Him, and meditating on His Word. Adding in a devotion, such as When Jesus Speaks to a Hurting Heart, can be a great medicinal resource.
2. Beautifully Broken: Jesus Every Day Devotional Guide By Candance Cameron Bure
A second devotion book for the brokenhearted is Beautifully Broken: Jesus Every Day Devotional Guide by Candance Cameron Bure. I have not personally read this devotion, but I have heard good things about this devotion from other believers. Most of us know Candance Cameron Bure from her time as “DJ” on Full House, yet not many of us are aware that she is now a Christian writer and speaker. In her devotion, she discusses the feelings of brokenness and how these feelings of brokenness can turn us back to the Lord.
She explains that even in our state of brokenness, Jesus never stops loving us. Often, we think Jesus doesn’t love us in our brokenness because we are pushed with the idea that we are sinning too much or hated by God if we are not always happy, cheery, and bubbly. This is a misnomer because being brokenhearted is not synonymous with being outside God's favor.
God knows we are not going to be happy all the time. It is common to confuse happiness with joy. Happiness and joy are not the same. Happiness is a fleeting feeling that occurs based on circumstances, yet joy is always in our hearts because we know Jesus. Even in the pain, we can still have joy by knowing Jesus is with us in our state of brokenness. Through this devotion, Candance Cameron Bure challenges us to find the beauty of brokenness and how it directs us to Christ.
3. Embraced: 100 Devotions to Know God Is Holding You Close By Lysa TerKeurst
A third devotion book for the brokenhearted is Embraced: 100 Devotions to Know God Is Holding You Close by Lysa TerKeurst. Lysa TerKeurst is a personal favorite author of mine. I have read many of her books and devotions, and they all inspire, encourage, and challenge me. In her devotion, Embraced: 100 Devotions to Know God Is Holding You Close, TerKeurst challenges us to give our most painful hurts to God and allow Him to carry our burdens for us. When we are feeling brokenhearted, giving our pain over to Christ is vital to healing and moving past our pain, sadness, and sorrows.
Feeling brokenhearted is going to happen throughout our lives, and as TerKeurst emphasizes in her devotion, there is freedom from the brokenness through Jesus. Brokenness can bring us closer to God, yet God doesn’t want us to stay in a state of being brokenhearted for the rest of our lives. He wants us to shine brightly for Him and embrace the healing that can only come through His love. Through TerKeurst incorporating Bible passages, prayers, and prompts, this devotion helps you begin to heal and rediscover peace.
4. Be Still My Soul: Reflections on Living the Christian Life By Elisabeth Elliot
A fourth devotion book for the brokenhearted is Be Still My Soul: Reflections on Living the Christian Life by Elisabeth Elliot. Elisabeth Elliot lost her husband, Jim Elliot, during Operation Auca, a missionary endeavor to help the Waodani people of Ecuador that went terribly wrong. After the murder of her husband by the Waodani, Elisabeth could have held hatred in her heart toward the Waodani, but instead, she dedicated her time and energy to evangelizing to the Waodani. In her devotion, Be Still My Soul: Reflections on Living the Christian Life, she reflects upon her own brokenness after losing her husband and how the Lord helped her through this difficult season of life.
In this devotion, Elisabeth Elliot also discusses other aspects of walking as Jesus did and glorifying God through her pain. Through this devotion, the reader obtains a glimpse into Elisabeth’s life and the pain she experienced after her husband had died. It is a truly moving devotion that can bring our focus back to God through the midst of our pain. She reminds us to always turn to God in our pain, sufferings, and sorrows because when we turn to Him, He will cover us with His grace.
5. A Grief Observed By C. S. Lewis
A fifth devotion book for the brokenhearted is A Grief Observed by C. S. Lewis. I recently finished rereading this book and it impacted me more this time than when I read it in previous years. In A Grief Observed, C. S. Lewis paints a realistic picture of what it feels like when a loved one passes away. Lewis wrote this book after his wife, Joy, had passed. (When Lewis had first written this book, he placed a pen name on the book in order for others to not associate it with him.) While A Grief Observed is not by definition a devotion book, it is a book you can use during your devotional time if you are broken after losing a loved one. I could not recommend this book more to help the believer heal from brokenness.
I appreciate Lewis’ rawness and genuineness when he wrote this book because it helps me feel less alone in my own pain of my mother passing away. Maybe if you choose to read this book, you will feel less alone in your brokenness. Whenever we lose a loved one, we are bound to suffer from a broken heart. Though reading A Grief Observed won’t heal our broken hearts, it will help our pain feel more validated and it will help us come to realize that there are other believers across the world feeling the same pain we are feeling. In other words, we are never alone in our struggles, as Lewis shows in A Grief Observed. Even if we feel alone in our brokenness, we are not forsaken because God is only a prayer away.
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Vivian Bricker loves Jesus, studying the Word of God, and helping others in their walk with Christ. She has earned a Bachelor of Arts and Master's degree in Christian Ministry with a deep academic emphasis in theology. Her favorite things to do are spending time with her family and friends, reading, and spending time outside. When she is not writing, she is embarking on other adventures.