Grieving: Our Path Back to Peace
James R. White

Grieving: Our Path Back to Peace by James R. White is a book that is short and easy read for those who struggle to stay focused during grief. The author is a hospital chaplain and writes from a Christian perspective. Speaking from his experience of having worked with many people in grief, White does an excellent job of naming the grief experience and process. As I read through the book, there were many, “ah, yes—that’s how I feel” moments.

I liked how he pointed out some subtle differences in an upward spiral through grief and a downward spiral. We may all start in “numbness/shock,” but we can move upward to “emptiness/solitude” or downward to “emptiness/isolation.” The difference may seem small, but even in the midst of deep emptiness and pain solitude is more healing than isolation. The book points out several other small, but significant differences in the upward and downward spiral. Of course he also notes that the spirals are not neat and orderly and a person might move between the two spirals.

The book continues covering most of the major elements of the grief process, dealing with difficulties along the way, asking the difficult questions, and looking to scripture for insight.

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