“If, in the end, redemption does not exist for the worst of us, it exists for no one.”
The Bellowing of Cain
by Jeremy Gordon Grinnell
—Hope for Those Who’ve Blown It—
A Book for Those Who’ve Shipwrecked Their Own Lives
It’s a strange form of Christianity that would deny that perpetrators of evil can be redeemed.
Have you ever made a self-destructive choice? Most people have, but what if that choice was bad enough to destroy your whole life or – worse – that of others? How do you survive the losses? How do you go about rebuilding a life worth having?
While many excellent books have been written on how to survive and grow through pain, nearly all of them are written by victims for victims – the cancer diagnosis, the loss of the child or parent, the layoff, the unrealized dream – terrible things, yes, but things that come from without for which we bear little actual responsibility.
More lamentable, however, are the pains that come from our own bad choices – miseries for which we are the cause. Where are the books that speak to those whose wounds are self-inflicted? Who writes to them about their unique journey? Who can?
The Bellowing of Cain was written primarily to those who, like Cain, have made horrible life-wrecking decisions and secondarily to those who have a calling to live and work with them. It is written by a fellow traveler who understands what it means to destroy one’s life…for he once did so.
In the culture of disposable people, we need a book like The Bellowing of Cain to teach us about the unique journey taken by people with baggage – baggage like shame, loss, and remorse. Such luggage is heavy and bends the back of those who must carry it, and they often walk alone.
Who will speak for them?
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What Others Are Saying
Endorsements for The Bellowing of Cain…
“I couldn’t put this book down. As one who has been betrayed, I longed to understand: How could someone who claimed to love me fail to see and hear my pain? How could they lose all feeling for me? How could I have prevented this from happening? Am I to blame? Through his own excruciating journey as the betrayer, Jeremy courageously explains what I wanted to know: exactly how sin hardened his heart, diminishing everyone he cared about and deafening him to their cries. Until Jeremy turned back to the Lord, he was blind to the ones he had loved the most. This is an important book about the deadly grip of sin, the gift and process of repentance, and the overwhelming, unending love of God.”
“The Bellowing of Cain is a compelling story of someone who, through his sin, damaged his own life and the lives of others. That story, in itself, isn’t unusual. What’s unique is Jeremy Grinnell’s willingness to tell with unflinching candor his story of failure and shame so that others might benefit from his hard-won wisdom and enter more deeply into the reality of God’s extravagant grace. This is a must-read book which will stretch and enlarge our imagination for what restoration and redemption can look like in the body of Christ.”
“Without apology, I’m one of Jeremy’s raving fans!”
“Some books come from the drudgery of academic research while others are forged from hard experiences. There are no harder experiences for professional clergy than a forced exit from ministry for cause that is clear and unarguable. And yet, this hard experience is more than a cautionary tale. It is a prophetic warning. Will you listen? You are closer than you think to a series of deceptions that will lead you into a life-crushing moment and all the consequences that come after. No, really. Your boundaries are permeable, your excuses are thin. You are in danger. This book is essential reading for anyone and everyone who works with other people. ”
“The Bellowing of Cain offers wisdom from a voice we don’t often hear from in the aftermath of a scandal caused by a destructive sin. Not the voice of one wounded by what’s been done, but the voice of one who did it – one who has plumbed the depths of repentance and grace and found that God is both able and willing to redeem all things. I want all my friends in ministry to read this book! May it stir our imaginations for what a full expression of grace and redemption could look like in the Church!”
“This is the book I’ve been looking for and couldn’t find. It’s an unflinchingly honest account about the messy complexities of sin and grace, repentance and forgiveness. It invites us to a gospel hope in the slow work of God.”