Suggested Reading about Physical Affliction

I want to start compiling a list of biblically sound books that are relevant to physical suffering. They might relate to dealing with a particular disease, or how to handle an emotional response to physical problems, or how to biblically discern proper medical treatment. They might be counseling books, memoirs, novels, or devotionals.

I plan to keep a running list of these books over at, so check back there for any future recommendations on the topic. Meanwhile, here’s the beginning of that list:


Laurie’s Story: Discovering Joy In Adversity by Laurie Elmore Thompson. Another story of suffering turned into blessing! Laurie’s family was in a horrible car crash during her teenage years, and though she recovered in many ways, she still deals with lingering effects of that accident. A moving testimony of how God cares for His children, gently drawing them to Himself and sustaining them throughout every circumstance.


Just One Touch by Cynthia Conner Goyang. Fictionalized account of the woman who touched Christ’s garment — the same woman whose story inspired my own book. Eye-opening glimpse of the tremendous ways she probably suffered, and the unwavering confidence she placed in the Messiah. Inspiring, intriguing, convicting, and encourage. *Read my full review here.


Sick and Tired: Empathy, Encouragement, and Practical Help for Those Suffering from Chronic Health Problems by Kimberly Rae. I cried so many times reading this short little book, because it felt like having a friend validate everything I’ve felt since being diagnosed with a long-term illness. Encouraging, comforting, and uplifting — and written from a Christian author’s personal experience with chronic illness. A must-read for those with chronic illness and their care-givers.


Will Medicine Stop the Pain?: Finding God’s Healing for Depression, Anxiety, and Other Troubling Emotions by Elyse Fitzpatrick & Laura Hendrickson, M.D.. Does depression require counseling or medication? What about anxiety, bipolar, and psychosis — are they chemical or spiritual problems? The authors write from personal experience and a strong biblical background, offering sound Scriptural advice for dealing with these problems in a way that both helps the sufferer improve and glorifies God. They also wisely caution against making medical changes without a doctor’s approval.


21 Days to Finding Purpose in Pain by Stacy Williams. This 21-day devotional speaks to the emotional side effects of dealing with physical suffering on a daily basis. Stacy doesn’t gloss over the hurt, but speaks out of her own anguish of suffering, offering sound biblical encouragement to seek God’s Word for answers. *Read my full review here.


Affliction by Edith Schaeffer. Less specific to chronic illness, but invaluable for every Christian who faces suffering — in other words, everyone. Provides a wonderful study of God’s providence and goodness. Written from personal experience with physical affliction and an intimate knowledge of God. *Read my full review here.


Joni: An Unforgettable Story by Joni Eareckson Tada. If you haven’t heard of this famous paraplegic, you need to read her story. Find out how she was injured in a diving accident, spent months in denial, and finally accepted her newly permanent condition — and in the process, discovered a whole new purpose for living. And discover why she’s a hero to so many… like me.


A Place of Healing: Wrestling with the Mysteries of Suffering, Pain, and God’s Sovereignty by Joni Eareckson Tada. How can you find joy in the midst of chronic suffering? Joni Eareckson Tada shares a little of her search for physical healing, her daily struggle to handle the emotional challenges of her disability, and the joy that can come from surrending it all to God. Beautiful, relevant, hopeful, and centered upon the truth of God’s Word.


I know there’s more great books out there about dealing with physical suffering —
What can YOU recommend??


*Disclaimer: this post contains affiliate links.

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7 thoughts on “Suggested Reading about Physical Affliction

  1. I really liked the book “Trusting God” by Jerry Bridges. I found it helpful advice when I was going through some hard situations.

    1. That’s a great book too! Good suggestion!

  2. Thank you so much for these resources! I haven’t heard of them all and am looking forward to checking them out. I also recently have been listening to a sermon series on suffering from the book of Job by Pastor Tullian Tchividjian ( and he has a book published with the sermon messages called Glorious Ruin: How Suffering Sets You Free. The sermon series has been really good and I’d like to get the book to follow up.

    1. I’ve heard good things about that book – been wanting to read it for a while now!

  3. That looks like a great list! Thank you for sharing with Desire to Inspire! 🙂

  4. I started reading Where is God When it Hurts by Phillip Yancey a while back, but put it down for a while. What I read was helpful, though! I love that you are making this list and plan to connect it to the bottom of one of my posts about sisters in Christ who suffer from chronic illness. I’m visiting from The Desire to Inspire link-up. 🙂

    1. Jen, thanks so much for stopping by! Yancey’s book is another good one, for any Christian really.

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