Kiss the Wave: Embracing God in Your Trials
What does it mean to “kiss the wave?” These words, attributed to nineteenth-century British preacher Charles Spurgeon, speak to the Christian’s only hope for perseverance in suffering. What if we can learn to experience the nearness of God in the midst of suffering? What if God intends to work through our trials rather than simply take them away?
After living for more than a decade with a debilitating nerve condition in both arms, Dave Furman shows us that God, in his grace, always designs trials for our good—not minimizing the pain, but infusing significance into our suffering. Furman demonstrates that, even when tossed to and fro by stormy waves, God is near . . . and that makes all the difference in the world.
“If you want a book that promises you a life of instant healing and happy endings, give this book a miss. You’ll be better off with the many books that specialize in empty promises. But if you want a book that is realistic about years of chronic pain and debilitating depression, yet drives you toward the comforts of Christ and his gospel, read this book. Dave Furman does not provide us with an abstract dissertation; rather, out of his own experience he shows us what it means to kiss the wave that throws you onto the Rock of Ages.”
—D. A. Carson, Research Professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School; Cofounder, The Gospel Coalition
“Dave so gently reminds us that God doesn’t expect us to call the hardest parts of life ‘good,’ but instead desires for us to hold fast to his immeasurable, never-ending goodness in the midst of our suffering.”
—Jennie Allen, author, Nothing to Prove; Founder, IF:Gathering
“Kiss the Wave was not simply written by Dave Furman. Dave lives these words. He knows what it is to gasp for air in the churning place where wave smashes stone. With faithful endurance and Scripture-seasoned words, Dave compels us to think of our inevitable suffering theologically, not theoretically. With a courageous heart, he loves his family, serves his flock, and champions the cause of our sovereign God with a vigorous joy that belies his constant chronic pain. Jesus is the hero of his story. Dave Furman is eminently qualified to shepherd us in the matter of suffering, for not only is he a herald of God’s Word, but he is also a man who is learning, over and over, to kiss the wave.”
—Colin Buchanan, singer; songwriter
“Dave Furman not only offers a careful exegesis of the Word of God for those who are suffering, but also shares his own story of constant pain and weakness in light of a God who loves. This is not a detached theological examination of suffering in God’s world, but rather the testimony of a man who loves God and desires to live according to God’s call on his life despite being unable to button his own shirt. If you’re suffering, you need to read this book. If you love other sufferers, share it with them.”
—Elyse Fitzpatrick, author, Home: How Heaven and the New Earth Satisfy Our Deepest Longings and Because He Loves Me: How Christ Transforms Our Daily Life
“This is a remarkable book—searingly honest, genuinely funny, relentlessly grounded, and, above all, saturated with the gospel. Dave Furman has succeeded in equipping us to face the suffering that eventually comes to all of us in a way that flows from who we are in Christ. He has provided us with a rich and moving exposition of what the Christian life looks like in real time. Let me put this simply: read this book!”
—Gary Millar, Principal, Queensland Theological College, Australia; author, Calling on the Name of the Lord and Now Choose Life; coauthor, Saving Eutychus
“Dave Furman knows suffering and trials better than most men I know. Suffering and trials are not mere theoretical constructs in his life, but everyday realities that propel him into the arms of a loving Savior. With a pastor’s heart and a fellow sufferer’s empathy, Dave guides us with his characteristic lucidity, warmth, and clear-mindedness. He reminds us that in times of trial and trouble, far from being absent, the Father’s pruning hand is closest to us. Don’t read this book to merely gain knowledge or a quick fix, but to truly understand and live out the psalmist’s cry, ‘It is good for me that I was afflicted, that I might learn your statutes.’”
—Jonathan Holmes, Pastor of Counseling, Parkside Church; Executive Director, Fieldstone Counseling; Council Member, Biblical Counseling Coalition
“I was deeply encouraged by this book! It is great for anyone, but just right for someone in the midst of suffering. Few can achieve the delicate balance between biblical truth, empathy, and understanding of the struggle, while also pointing toward hope in the Lord. Dave has done this well. His meditations on Scripture comfort and encourage us to see joy in God’s good plans for even the hardest trials of our life. Stories from his personal struggles and those of others add a sense of camaraderie and bring to life the fight for joy in the middle of great trials. A great resource!”
—Connie Dever, author, He Will Hold Me Fast; Curriculum and Music Writer, The Praise Factory
Dave Furman (ThM, Dallas Theological Seminary) serves as the senior pastor of Redeemer Church of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates, which he planted in 2010. Dave and his wife, Gloria, have four children.