Special Challenges


Articles on Rooted

Student Series: What Students Need From You During Seasons of Mental Illness by Emily Jenkins

HTH: Discerning Depression in Our Teens by Liz Edrington

Parenting a Child With Major Depressive Disorder by Ingram Link


When the Darkness Will Not Lift: Doing What We Can While We Wait for God- And Joy by John Piper. Piper offers hope in Jesus for those who are suffering from depression.


Articles on Rooted

Helping Kids Deal With Grief podcast with Cameron Cole, Liz Edrington and Anna Meade Harris

Ask Rooted: How Do You Minister to a Student Whose Loved One is Sick or Has Died? Rooted

Why We Must Encourage Our Students to Mourn by Ben Beswick

How the Church Can Help Grieving and Broken Families During the Holidays by Anna Meade Harris

If He Loved Me, Why Did My Dad Commit Suicide? by Alice Churnock


What Grieving People Wish You Knew About What Really Helps (and What Really Hurts) by Nancy Guthrie

Drawing on her own experience with grief, Guthrie provides an invaluable resource for people who want to help people in mourning. A must-read for any pastor or youth worker.


Articles on Rooted

Teaching Teens a Theology of Suffering in a Time of School Shootings by Kendal Conner

Shame, Suffering and Authenticity in Youth Group by Shaun McDonald

How to Help Those in Suffering conference audio by Jared Wilson

What God Intends in Suffering conference audio by Jared Wilson

Suffering and Despair conference audio of Jared Wilson

God, Evil, Suffering and Teens- Part 1- (Re)Framing the Conversation by Mark Howard

God, Evil, Suffering and Teens- Part 2- So Where Does Evil Come From? by Mark Howard

God, Evil, Suffering and Teens- Part 3- Humanity and God’s Solution to Evil by Mark Howard


Hearing Jesus Speak into Your Sorrow and Holding Onto Hope: A Pathway Through Suffering to the Heart of God by Nancy Guthrie. The first book addresses the enormous questions we have for God in the midst of suffering; the second looks at suffering through the teaching in the book of Job.

Therefore I Have Hope: Twelves Truths That Comfort, Sustain, and Redeem in Tragedy by Cameron Cole. Following the death of their child, Cole and his wife found comfort in the good news of Jesus Christ.

Embodied Hope: A Theological Meditation on Pain and Suffering by Kelly Kapic.

A beautiful book that makes no attempt to sugar-coat suffering. Instead, Kapic shares how the suffering of Jesus gave his family enduring hope in the midst of physical pain.

Suffering and the Heart of God: How Trauma Destroys and Christ Restores by Diane Langberg. Excellent resource for ministry to the suffering.

Sexual Abuse

Articles on Rooted

Jesus: Sexually Assaulted and Objectified for Us All by Seth Stewart

Not Just Politics: Light and Hope to Sexual Abuse Survivors by Alice Churnock

Talking About Sexual Assault With Teenage Girls by Kendal Conner

Grace in the Grey Areas Between Sin and Victimhood by Sarah Nixon


The Wounded Heart: Hope For Adult Victims of Childhood Sexual Abuse by Dan Allender. God’s comfort and grace for the victims of sexual abuse.

On the Threshold of Hope by Diane Langberg. From Dr. Lanberg, gospel comfort for survivors of sexual abuse.

Rid of My Disgrace: Hope and Healing for Victims of Sexual Assault by Justin and Lindsey Holcomb. As a pastor and as a counselor, this husband-and-wife team guides victims of sexual assault to hope and healing in Jesus.


Articles on Rooted

The Anatomy of Addiction podcast by Sharon Hersh

HTH: Everything You Think You Know About Addiction is Wrong by Liz Edrington


Addiction and Grace: Love and Spirituality in the Healing of Addictions by Gerald May. Relinquishing the need to control to grasp hope in the gospel.


Articles on Rooted

A Call to Incarnational Ministry in the Face of Teen Self-Harm by Devan Grayson


Cutting: Understanding and Overcoming Self-Mutilation by Steven Levenkron. Levenkron has been working with teens who self-harm for decades.

Helping Teens Who Cut: Using DBT Skills to End Self- Injury by Michael Hollander. Primarily geared towards parents, this book shares techniques from dialectical behavior theory to help families.


Articles on Rooted

Freedom for Our Perfectionist Teens by Alice Churnock


Graceful: Letting Go of Your Try-Hard Life by Emily Freeman. The seemingly happy girl who follows all the rules if often crushed by the weight of her responsibility to “never mess up.” Encouraging young women to stop trying so hard and start trusting Jesus, Freeman helps them discover what it means to be real- and encourages them to look at themselves and their faith with new eyes.

The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to be and Embrace Who You Are by Brene Brown. Brown, a leading expert on shame, authenticity and belonging, shares ten guideposts on the power of wholehearted living- a way of engaging with the world from a place of worthiness. (Not necessarily gospel-centered, but very helpful in understanding shame from a psychological perspective.)

Mother to Son: Letters to a Black Boy on Identity and Hope by Jasmine Holmes. One of the most important books published in 2020. In prose rich with beauty, pain, and grace, Jasmine Holmes tells a very particular story of a mother’s tender and fierce love for her young Black son and her fight to help him see himself as Jesus sees him. 

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