The best Christian books when you’re going through hard times

Who am I?

I’ve been a writer for most of my life, and when a publisher approached me to write a book, they asked me to write about how I managed to overcome the death of my husband at such a young age and move forward into a successful life. I meet people all the time who have had hard things happen, and I wanted to help them get past the pain. Hard times don’t have to be the end of the story! They can strengthen us and equip us to help others. That’s why I love books about how to keep going in times of trouble and overcome.  


I wrote...

Why, God, Why ?: What to Do When Life Doesn't Make Sense

By Karen Jensen Salisbury,

Book cover of Why, God, Why ?: What to Do When Life Doesn't Make Sense

What is my book about?

When I was 37, my husband (a pastor, also 37 and father of our two sons) died suddenly in our bed on New Year’s night. He hadn’t been sick – he just went to bed and went to heaven. And I had questions! Sometimes things happen in life that completely shatter us – we can’t make sense of it. Not only death, but other life-changing events and devasting disappointments. We just didn’t see it coming, and now we don’t know how to go on. I wrote this book years later – it’s a testimony of how God brought my sons and me through, and how you can ask Him all your tough questions and move forward. I call it “a manual for getting past the pain.” 

Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy books, we may earn an affiliate commission.

The books I picked & why

Book cover of Through the Storm: Help from Heaven When All Hell Breaks Loose

Karen Jensen Salisbury Why did I love this book?

I read this book when I was going through a troubled time, and I found it to be so helpful and encouraging! Tony writes in such a way that makes me feel like God can help me overcome any situation. As believers, we are not helpless or hopeless -- God has established powerful principles and strategies to help us thrive (not just survive) in the midst of life’s hard times. He uses examples from the Bible including Jonah, Jesus’ disciples, and the Apostle Paul, who all faced storms and troubles – way worse than mine. But he shows how they all got through their troubles and how I could do it too!

By Tony Cooke,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Through the Storm as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This isn't a book about the weather; it's about our lives.

The word "storms" describes the difficult and challenging seasons we all face periodically. However, as believers, we don't have to feel helpless or hopeless. God has established powerful principles and strategies to help us thrive (not just survive) in the midst of life's challenges.

In the Bible, Jonah, the Disciples, and Paul all faced storms at sea. The storms came for different reasons and deliverance came in diverse ways. Most importantly, they all got through their storms and made it to the other side. There, destinies were fulfilled and…


Book cover of Finding God. Finding Me.: A Mom's Journey from the Pit to Peace

Karen Jensen Salisbury Why did I love this book?

Once I started reading this book, I couldn’t put it down! There have been times in my life when I was desperately searching for peace, but instead felt confused, frustrated, hopeless, and questioning my faith. This book is the story of Jennifer’s journey to find peace and how she found it, through a vital, inspiring personal relationship with Jesus. And she helped me, as her reader, to find that same kind of wonderful relationship with Him!  

By Jennifer Covello,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Finding God. Finding Me. as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

My story begins on seat of the aluminum swing set in the back yard of my childhood home happily singing church hymns. It continues to the tan armchair of my bedroom where I faced the darkest moment of my life. The in-between time is dotted with challenges of attaining the “American Dream” and the ultimate fallout of that pursuit– divorce and life as a single mom. The common thread throughout is my faith in God – sometimes in plain sight, sometimes not. The turning point was the vision of Jesus that appeared to me after my divorce and how my…


Book cover of Don't Quit! Your Faith Will See You Through

Karen Jensen Salisbury Why did I love this book?

There have definitely been times in my life that I wanted to quit! Can you identify? I keep this book handy for days like those, and every time I grab it and read it, my faith gets renewed and I get encouraged enough to keep going. This book shows how to develop faith that won't quit – and if we don’t quit, we win in Jesus! 

By Kenneth W. Hagin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Don't Quit! Your Faith Will See You Through as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Don't Quit! Your Faith Will See You Through Don't quit! No matter how seemingly impossible the test or trial, if you won't cast away your confidence, your faith in God will see you through to victory- always!


Book cover of Overload: How to Unplug, Unwind, and Unleash Yourself from the Pressure of Stress

Karen Jensen Salisbury Why did I love this book?

I read this book in a particularly trying period in my life, when it just seemed like everything was going wrong. The title caught my eye because I sure did feel overloaded! Joyce helped me identify the worries in my life and offered practical, effective advice and scriptural wisdom I needed. I still grab it when I feel overwhelmed, and it helps me to manage stress. We all get stressed—from work, relationship challenges, financial trouble, or an overabundance of information. But Joyce shares inspiring insights from the Bible, and shows me how God’s strength can help me triumph over stress to achieve the joyful, peaceful life that God intends!

By Joyce Meyer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Overload as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

As technology increases your accessibility, it becomes harder to mute the background noise of your life and receive God's guidance. Joyce Meyer calls this OVERLOAD, when the demands of your busy life become all-consuming and overwhelming. But to experience the joyful life God has planned, you must make time to focus on His Word. Then you'll receive His healing calmness and gain the strength to take on life's challenges, from physical ailments to problems in relationships. Through the practical advice and Scriptural wisdom in this book, you'll learn how to unplug and free yourself from burdens that weigh you down.…


Book cover of Comeback & Beyond: How to Turn Your Setbacks Into Comebacks

Karen Jensen Salisbury Why did I love this book?

If you’ve been alive longer than 15 minutes, you’ve probably suffered a setback. I know I have! When hopes and dreams turn into a nightmare, it may seem like life is over and there’s no way out. But this book reminds me that God is in the business of resurrecting dead visions, and He has already prepared a comeback. Tim shares the strategies and motivation I needed to turn tragedy into triumph! 

By Tim Storey,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Comeback & Beyond as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Say Goodbye to Failure, Disappointment, and Fear. Get Ready to Live the Life That You Were Meant to Live!

In these uncertain times, setbacks can happen to anyone — the rich and the poor, the famous and the unknown. It is your response to the setback that determines your comeback. Tim Storey candidly shares from the experiences that led him to discover the powerful truths contained in this book. You will uncover the reasons why setbacks happen, and more importantly, you will be armed with step-by-step direction on what you can do NOW to turn your situation around...not tomorrow, not…


You might also like...

She Refused to Bow

By Farida Manekshah,

Book cover of She Refused to Bow

Farida Manekshah

New book alert!

What is my book about?

A personal memoir which introduces the supernatural in the most natural way.

A message which came in a dream and brought you wealth. A sadhu's warning. The presence you feel as you pray at a grave. A well that dries up. The vision you see as you peer out of the window of your cabin. A jinni. An ancient religion. When everything you say and do has consequence. Because nothing that is done can be undone.

She Refused to Bow

By Farida Manekshah,

What is this book about?

A personal memoir which introduces the supernatural in the most natural way.

A message which came in a dream and brought you wealth. A sadhu's warning. The presence you feel as you pray at a grave. A well that dries up. The vision you see as you peer out of the window of your cabin. A jinni. An ancient religion. When everything you say and do has consequence. Because nothing that is done can be undone.


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in Christianity, stress management, and self-actualization?

10,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about Christianity, stress management, and self-actualization.

Christianity Explore 583 books about Christianity
Stress Management Explore 26 books about stress management
Self-Actualization Explore 189 books about self-actualization