Why All People Suffer: How a Loving God Uses Suffering to Perfect Us

Why All People Suffer: How a Loving God Uses Suffering to Perfect Us

By Paul Chaloux
Product Code: 9781644134214
★★★★★ ★★★★★ 5.00/5 Stars. (3 Reviews)

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Suffering is one of the most challenging and inescapable mysteries of life — even for the innocent. Thinkers have long been vexed by the idea that a good God permits suffering, and it has been a stumbling block for many souls striving to live lives of faith.

But what if we’ve been looking at suffering improperly all this time? What if, instead of serving as evidence against God, suffering represented the very proof of a loving God?

In this transformative and enlightening book, Dr. Paul Chaloux — adjunct professor of theology at the Catholic University of America — demonstrates that suffering is not retribution from an angry, vengeful God but the saving action of a loving God who directs us away from evil and toward eternal joy in Heaven.

Educated in his own “school of suffering,” Dr. Chaloux explains the four tasks of suffering that are essential in the economy of salvation and why, if suffering were to be abolished, no one would be saved. Using well-known stories from Scripture and the lives of the saints, he explains numerous other aspects of God’s use of evil and suffering in His plan for our salvation, including:

  • How suffering is not a punishment from God but a gift to the guilty and the innocent alike
  • Why suffering is not evil but rather an “evil-detector”
  • Why suffering needs to be harsh and persistent to protect and perfect us
  • How to recognize and respond joyfully to God’s call in the face of loss, disability, injury, illness, and death 
  • How we are acting as messengers of God when we witness to our own suffering

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★★★★★ ★★★★★
5.00/5 Stars out of 3 Reviews
Rich and articulate exploration!
(San Diego CA) | June 2nd, 2021
Why All People Suffer is a beautiful modern synthesis of the Catholic Theology of Suffering. It poignantly and courageously describes the meaning of God’s call to accept and transcend suffering, dives into the nature of the journey itself, and affirms the power of redemptive love in the process. As an ecumenical counselor working in the field of grief and end of life care, I have found Why All People Suffer to be a valuable resource and a gift of truth, beautifully presented, clearly articulated, and ripe for deep exploration.
A Necessary Book
(Nome Alaska) | June 1st, 2021
I am delighted to have encountered a work that so clearly and methodically addresses one of the knottiest issues a faithful Catholic can face: the problem of suffering. In my experience, the problem of suffering is among the biggest reasons why a person may turn away from the Catholic faith or hesitate from embracing it in the first place. The idea that a good God, who has power over every occurrence in the world, will allow terrible tragedy is a puzzling one. It seems to undermine the core Catholic notion that God was good and loving enough to take on a human nature and become our Savior. Add to that the fact that “the problem of suffering” is rarely theoretical, and it is very easy to see why one would allow suffering to get in the way of one’s relationship with God. The thing is, the Catholic Church has an answer to the “problem of suffering”. Why All People Suffer by Doctor Paul Chaloux is the most comprehensive, well-sourced account of this answer that I have yet come across. Drawing from such seminal theologians as Benedict XVI and St. Thomas Aquinas, Chaloux presents some of the Church’s most compelling arguments as to why suffering is an important element of our lives and how it in fact calls us to a deeper relationship with a God who also suffered on the cross. Why All People Suffer isn’t all summery of Church teaching and past theologians’ positions, however. Chaloux also presents some fascinating original concepts. For example, one that I found to be particularly insightful was the idea that it is a categorical error to consider suffering to be intrinsically problematic. Chaloux broaches this idea immediately, during a discussion of Epicurus’ declaration that the presence of suffering indicates a deficient God. Epicurus, Chaloux points out, didn’t consider that suffering might exist to bring about good. This idea colours the rest of the book as we are invited to reconsider the nature of suffering, and view the effects of suffering in a way we never have before. A book that recategorizes suffering, proposing it as something that can bring about good, is not just for Catholics. The idea that suffering is not meaningless ought to bring hope to anybody of any or no faith. Chaloux backs his proposition with logic and clarity that extends beyond the teachings of the Catholic Church and that can appeal to anyone with an open mind. The methods by which one can “put suffering to use” can bring fulfillment and hope to the lives of anyone. I heartily recommend this book!
A message for all of us!
(Southington , CT) | May 9th, 2021
I highly recommend you buy Why All People Suffer. No one goes through life without a moment or period of great pain and suffering. Yes, the degree may vary from person to person, but suffering is an unavoidable part of all of our lives. Imagine feeling blessed instead of cursed. Imagine feeling God's love instead of his wrath. Paul makes the infallible argument God's love for us is even more evident in our suffering. You'll be inspired never to feel self-pity and victimized again after reading his book.

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