When Grief Comes

Finding Strength for Today and Hope for Tomorrow

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God's tender mercies will embrace you in the midst of grief.

The death of a loved one sends us on a lonely and painful journey, one Kirk Neely knows well. Not only does he counsel the bereaved as a seasoned pastor, in a few months' time he faced the death of three loved ones--including his son. Now, in When Grief Comes, he offers personal stories and practical information to help you understand each stage and phase of grief. He also suggests symbols of hope to assure you of God's care and concern along the way and includes a special section on the needs of grieving children. Neely always points you toward the ultimate hope for Christians--eternal life in heaven, including a joyful reunion with those who believe.

For yourself or a bereaved friend, When Grief Comes is a wise, strong companion to take along on grief's journey as you heal into a more hopeful tomorrow.


"Kirk Neely's When Grief Comes is a truthful book, written from the center of this pastor's own broken heart. It will be a book of encouragement for those mourning the death of a child, a grandparent, a parent, a spouse, a friend. And it will be a book of wisdom for those who long to bring comfort to the grieving."--Stephanie Paulsell, Houghton Professor of the Practice of Ministry Studies, Harvard Divinity School

"Dr. Kirk Neely has written a marvelous book on grief. Dr. Neely's shepherding heart as a pastor and his rich experience as a Christian counselor make When Grief Comes an invaluable resource. Kirk's storytelling, his skillful use of Scripture, and his own personal experience as one acquainted with grief combine to bring encouragement and hope to those who are grieving. When Grief Comes will also be helpful to all who aspire to give comfort to those who walk through the valley of the shadow of death."--Cliff Barrows, music and program director, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association

"Kirk Neely writes as a compassionate and informed pastor. Not only does Kirk understand the dynamics of grief, but also he understands and cares for people. Kirk has a wonderful ability to see God at work in the stories of his and other people's lives. What happens to those of us who read this book is that we see God anew in the stories of our lives and even our losses. This book brings hope in a powerful way."--Charles Bugg, dean and professor of church ministry and leadership, M. Christopher White School of Divinity, Gardner-Webb University

"When Grief Comes covers most of the ways in which we encounter loss and manage grief. What sets this book apart from the many self-help books on coping with grief is the personal journey this writer has made with five generations of his family. He demonstrates the strengths that come from serving in a community which has known him and his ancestors. Unlike Gertrude Stein, who found no 'there' there, this author has a strong sense of place and loss. All of which is put in perspective by his profound understanding of the Old Testament and New Testament writings. He leads the grieving person to discover sources of strength and hope. He has listened attentively to the stories of children, youth, adults and elderly persons who have faced differing sources of loss. Their voices are clearly heard and faithfully reported.
One of the repeated joys of this book is the succinct style in which he writes, bringing solace, insight, humor, and new light to the grief journey we all make.
Kirk Neely is a worthy successor to his mentor and teacher, Wayne E. Oates. Both speak from Scripture to the human condition. If you read only one book on grief, I recommend it be When Grief Comes. Such a joyful read should be shared."--Clarence Y. Barton, retired chaplain

"Kirk Neely's When Grief Comes weaves painful personal experience with pastoral wisdom to provide support, hope, and sustaining presence. In the tradition of Wayne Oates's Your Particular Grief, this is a comforting book for those who are mourning. When Grief Comes offers reassurance, support, and the deep understanding of one who has traveled the path from shock and disbelief to healing and hope. Speaking directly to grieving people, Rev. Neely shares freely his own stories of pain and the healing he experienced through his Christian faith."--Denise McLain Massey, associate professor of pastoral care and counseling, McAfee School of Theology, Mercer University

The Author

  1. Kirk Neely
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    Kirk Neely

    Kirk H. Neely is the former senior pastor of Morningside Baptist Church in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where he served from 1996 to 2014. He holds a DMin in pastoral counseling and psychology of religion from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He and...

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