[Light Arises in the Darkness Book] Intro

[Light Arises in the Darkness Book] Intro

 

Recently, I mentioned my new book I was writing, Light Arises in the Darkness: How to Go Through Suffering and Experience Incredible Joy.

So here is my book–in progress–starting with the a cover layout I made on Photoshop. It may change as I get closer to publication, but this will work for now.

 

 

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And here is the chapter outline, followed by the introduction. Keep in mind the book will be edited before publication, but you will get to see it in the rough, first. I really appreciate your comments, as that will be an encouragement and will also help me in the direction I take the book.

Please pray for me that I would write it well–that it would be according to the truth in God’s word, the Bible, that it would encourage others in the midst of their struggles, and that it would help people to see how awesome God is, in the midst of the difficulties of life. Thank you!

 


Light Arises in the Darkness

How to Go Through Suffering and Experience Incredible Joy

Copyright 2017 by Matt Philleo. All rights reserved.

 


CONTENTS

  1. Why is there Suffering?
  2. Acknowledging Your Suffering
  3. Suffering Caused by Financial Problems
  4. Suffering Caused by Health Problems
  5. Suffering Caused by Loss Problems
  6. Suffering Caused by Relationship Problems
  7. Suffering Caused by Internal Problems
  8. Seeking the Lord in Your Suffering
  9. Responding to His Presence and Encouragement
  10. Becoming an Encourager

 


 

 

“Our sorrows are all, like ourselves, mortal. There are no immortal sorrows for immortal souls. They come, but blessed be God, they also go. Like birds of the air, they fly over our heads. But they cannot make their abode in our souls. We suffer today, but we shall rejoice tomorrow.” – Charles Spurgeon

 

INTRODUCTION

This book is not meant for those who have it all together.

I wrote this book partially as way of recording my own struggles, and piecing together in life how God has lifted me up out of the muck and mire, leading me from darkness into light, and is still lifting me up today. He can and will do the same for you, if you let Him. It is my hope that you will find great encouragement through reading this book.

 

 

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But, on the flip side, the best this book, or any book like this can do is serve as a signpost, pointing you to the Book of books, that is the Bible. I believe God wants to jump off its pages, in the middle of your discouragement and despair, give you a warm, life-infusing hug, tell you it will be alright, encourage you by giving you a plan of what He wants to do in your life, and even how you will respond to that by following Him closely.

What I write I am going to share from a biblical perspective, a Christian worldview. If you are not a Christian, it is not my goal to alienate you, but I must be true to who I am. My God has encouraged me through many trials in life. I believe He will do the same for you, because I’m nobody special. (But I am loved by Him, and so are you!)

Even if you don’t believe in God just yet, He still longs to give you peace in the midst of the storm.

But in the process, He may tell you things you don’t want to hear. Now, would you rather have a friend who cared about you enough to tell you that you had a smudge on your face, or someone who was too afraid to tell you the truth and let you walk around all day like that?

 

 

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Yes, God actually speaks today, and it is either through the Bible or words that agree with the Bible. I will be sharing many things from its life-giving pages, as well as my own personal testimonies and those of others who have gone through suffering. As I share the stories of others, I have changed a few of the names to keep things anonymous.

I ask that you pray before and while you read this book. Everything that I present to you that is not directly from the Bible, I sincerely hope can be of help to you, but is subject to error. So please pray as you read this that God would allow that which is true to be remembered, and anything that is not would be forgotten and not retained. You can tell what is true by whether or not it agrees with the words contained in your Bible. May the Lord forgive me if I wrote anything that would diminish His glory and lead you astray in any way. I have almost turned away from writing this book for that reason. But I’ve continued to pray and believe this is what He wants me to do: that somehow, amazingly, God can use these meager words and images to bring encouragement to at least a few people and glory to Himself.

One thing you may be thinking is, “Who are you to write a book like this?”

Where are your credentials?

Well, I’m neither a professor nor a pastor. I’m not a psychologist, though I’ve given advice to many! I’m not even what you would consider a “super-Christian.”

I’m not a theologian. At least not a professional one.

I’m a layman. I’m a Christian, a husband, father, active member of a local church, and an artist. I love to do paintings and drawings that bring comfort, encouragement and inspiration to the brokenhearted.

So why write a book about encouragement?

A couple years ago, I started writing about the ideas in my art when I posted it to my blog. Extant above all was the theme of encouragement. My art is inspired by the times when I have experienced suffering of many kinds: financial, relationship, loss, and internal struggles. Can you relate? I found God to be the only stable source of encouragement in these times of darkness and despair. In fact, I have even experienced incredible joy in the middle of the worst circumstances!

 

 

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“I found God to be the only stable source of encouragement in these times of darkness and despair.”

 

 

I thought it would be great to create an e-book to share with readers of my blog, but soon the idea got wings and expanded to a full-size book, especially as I asked others to weigh in and share their stories of finding light in the darkness as well. A picture may be worth a thousand words, but sometimes a few words can create a thousand pictures in our minds. With that, I decided to put pen to paper, (or fingers to a keyboard) as well as a brush to canvas to express the concepts of comfort, encouragement, and inspiration.

It is this goal of finding joy in the middle of suffering that I want to share with you. Feel free to disagree with anything I’ve written, but come with an open mind. I’ll be including images of my artwork to illustrate and correlate with the concepts and ideas presented here.

May you come to see how great, loving, perfect, and valuable God is as you find encouragement through this book!

 

 

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And that’s it for now. In the next post, we’ll move right into Chapter 1: Why is There Suffering?

Be blessed, and I’ll be in touch,

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Share Your Thoughts!

If you have any comments or questions about what I wrote, please leave me your feedback below at the very bottom of the page! I will personally get back to you.
Can you help me spread the word? Please share this post with your family and friends by using the social media links on the side or at the bottom of this page. Thank you!
I invite you to become a part of my Reader’s Review Group and I’ll let you know whenever I have a new section on the book written. Also, you will receive a discount on the actual book when it’s published. Join today!

"I have inscribed you on the palm of my hands."

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"Inscribed," Pencil on Paper, by Matt Philleo

One day, when I was discouraged I read a verse in the Bible, in Isaiah, 49:15-16, where it says, "Can a woman forget her nursing child And have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget, but I will not forget you. Behold, I have inscribed you on the palm of my hands." This verse brought such encouragement, that I created this original work of art to share the incredible love of God with others, including you!


Get a free 8 x 10 copy of this drawing that you can use to print, share, or as wallpaper!

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4 Comments

  1. I know I am late with comments, but … I like the organization you have for your chapters and your explanation of who you are and why you are doing this book. I particularly like the fact that you are up front about this being from a biblical perspective. Few things are more annoying to those who do not believe than to feel like they were tricked into reading a book about God. If you are honest in the beginning, you’ll be more trusted in the end. All looks good.

    My one questions about the chapters is – do you need a chapter on “Suffering Caused by Spiritual Problems” or will that be incorporated into the one on internal problems. I have seen many people who do not seem to suffer from any of those other things, but they still suffer – mostly because they have never really submitted their lives to God or they have a lack of love for Him. That would be my only question at this point.

    Reply
    • Matt Philleo

      No worries, Sheila. Thanks for your comments. Yes, I thought it would be good too to let people know up front what they’re getting into. I’ve never felt good when I’ve attempted “bait-and-switch” clever evangelistic techniques. One preacher I’ve listened to recommended when you do evangelism, just ask, “Do you mind if I share the gospel with you?” And if they’re interested in hearing more, you don’t have to feel bad about sharing it all with them. If they don’t want to hear it, then you haven’t wasted anyone’s time.

      In regards to your question, yes, the chapter on Suffering Caused by Internal Problems is where I will deal with the spiritual component. I thought maybe I would include it “relationship problems”, because it is a relationship with God that really grants us joy within ALL the problems, but our spiritual life really is an internal struggle–unseen by others, and even ourselves sometimes, but not God. I may have to change the chapter sequence or titles if need be. But it gives me a framework for now.

      Thank you again for taking the time, Sheila, to review this with me!

      Reply
  2. Matt, I see you are communicating with Sheila. As I read beginnings of your book, I already thought of Sheila. She is a good editor. I feel as the book now stands there are too many long sentences. Some need to be broken up, or a reader would quit reading.

    Hoping to see you in person soon.

    Reply
    • Matt Philleo

      Thanks for the advice, Deetje. I’ll keep that in mind too as I write the other chapters. If I don’t see you before then, have a blessed, Merry Christmas!

      Reply

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