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Every Bitter Thing Is Sweet

Tasting the Goodness of God in All Things

Regular Price: $16.99

Special Price $10.19

Format: Hardcover

Availability: Out of stock

Quick Overview:

Sara Hagerty masterfully draws from her own story of spiritual and physical barrenness to birth in readers a new longing for God. With exquisite storytelling and reflection, Hagerty guides readers to a tender place that God is holding just for them—a place where he shapes the bitterness of lost expectations into deep, new places of knowing Him.


In the age of fingertip access to answers and a limitless supply of ambitions, where do we find the God who was birthed in dirt and straw? Sara Hagerty found him when life stopped working for her. She found him when she was a young adult mired in spiritual busyness and when she was a new bride with doubts about whether her fledgling marriage would survive. She found him alone in the night as she cradled her longing for babies who did not come. She found him as she kissed the faces of children on another continent who had lived years without a mommy’s touch.

In Every Bitter Thing Is Sweet, Hagerty masterfully draws from the narrative of her life to craft a mosaic of a God who leans into broken stories. Here readers see a God who is present in every changing circumstance. Most significantly, they see a God who is present in every unchanging circumstance as well.

Whatever lost expectations readers are facing—in family, career, singleness, or marriage—Every Bitter Thing Is Sweet will bring them closer to a God who longs for them to know him more. What does it look like to know God’s nearness when life breaks? What does it mean to receive his life when earthly life remains barren? How can God turn the bitterness of unmet desire into new flavors of joy?

With exquisite storytelling and reflection, Hagerty brings readers back to hope, back to healing, back to a place that God is holding for them alone—a place where the unseen is more real than what the eye can perceive. A place where every bitter thing is sweet.

Contributor(s) Sara Hagerty
About the Contributor(s) Sara Hagerty

Sara Hagerty is the author of Every Bitter Thing Is Sweet, a wife to Nate, and a mother of six, including four children adopted from Africa and one toddler who’s found his voice amid them all. After almost a decade of Christian life, she was introduced to pain and perplexity and, ultimately, intimacy with Jesus. God met her and moved her when life stopped working for her. His Word and His whisper took on new shape and form to her in the dark. Sara writes regularly about life delays, finding God in the unlikely, motherhood, marriage, and adoption at

UPC 025986339944
ISBN-10 0310339944
ISBN-13 9780310339946
Release Date Oct 7, 2014
Weight (lbs) 0.6200
Height 8.25
Width 5.50
Length 208
Length Unit Pages
Publisher Zondervan
Price $16.99
Format Hardcover
Language English

Customer Reviews

Review by April
Overall Rating
Thank-you Zondervan for sending me a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not paid for this review and all opinions are 100% mine.

We all face many different struggles in life as we have mountains and valleys. Sarah Hagerty shares her deep pain as she touches our heart to press in further to the understanding that DADDY God is and will always be NEAR and pursuing each of us! Sarah leaves us with a deeper hunger to jump into God's word as she leaves suggested Bible verses in the "For Your Continued Pursuit" section at the end of each chapter.

I enjoyed reading Sarah's heartfelt story and how she remained Faithful and full of hope but this story but beyond that Sarah has a way with words that penetrate your heart. God is using Sarah and this book to reach many readers into HIS loving arms as he is pursuing each and everyone of us.

This truly is a great story to read and watch and be in awe of how God worked HIS love in each of this families lives. (Posted on 1/6/2015)
Review by Dianna
Overall Rating
This book drew me in. Even though Sara and I did not share the same infertility, I understand how the focus on ministry kept her from really getting close to our creator in ways that should come naturally. As she journeyed through her life and found herself knowing God in the many ways and forms that He exists in our lives, I cried with her. I’ve learned the ways that our Father comes in and teaches us, loves us, disciplines us and most importantly raises us up to share our stories with the world around us.

Knowing God in the every day, the hard and the good can be both easy and hard. Finding out how to find joy on the journey of life and finding God’s goodness in every circumstance that surrounds us is vital to surviving and overcoming. I was shocked at how much I enjoyed this book. Not that the writing was bad, in fact it was excellent, but how the story just wrapped itself around my heart. Sara has a way of writing that just envelopes you and paints beautiful pictures of her story in your minds eye. If you haven’t read it you really should. It is beautiful.

She put into words my desire to know Him more. To fill myself up with His words and allow Him to reach into my very being and change me. Sara is an artist with words.

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. (Posted on 11/7/2014)
Review by Penny
Overall Rating
“Every Bitter Thing is Sweet” was sent to me by Zonderkids, a division of Zondervan Publishing, free of charge, in exchange for my honest review.
Sara Hagerty wrote this Christian memoir telling of her journey through heartache and happy times. She is very honest about her struggles of why God would place a dream and desire in her heart and then not fulfill it. She tells of marital problems, the loss of her daddy, international adoptions for four children, and finally, the birth of a child from her own womb. She uses Scripture to compare growth in her physical and emotional life to growth in her spiritual life. And, I especially like how she has included verses FOR YOUR CONTINUED PURSUIT after each section.
This is one of the only books that I read and then went back to reread – highlighter in hand…SO GOOD!!
I DEFINITELY recommend “Every Bitter Thing is Sweet”!!
(Posted on 10/31/2014)
Review by Jackie
Overall Rating
Sara’s beautifully written struggle with accepting how much God loved her has turned into a beautiful book for any woman to read, enjoy and learn from. Just her, for being her. Not because of her actions or accolades, but just because she belongs to Him. What I learned from reading this book had nothing to do with how to talk to women who struggle with infertility or families waiting for adoption paperwork to be finalized. What I learned is that no matter what our struggle, we need to see each day as an opportunity to meet God. He sees us and wants to be a part of our process. Are we going to push Him off, anxious to move to the next thing, or are we going to let him into our every moment?

Sara Hagerty shares her struggle over this very thing and beautifully encourages her readers to see how much God wants to be a part of their everything. I encourage any woman that is struggling with seeing God in her daily life to read Every Bitter Thing Is Sweet. Sara has something beautiful to tell you.

{I received this book from Zondervan in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and a good review was not guaranteed.} (Posted on 10/13/2014)
Review by Sally
Overall Rating
Quote From The book flap:
“Here you will see a God who is present in every changing circumstance. Most significantly, you see a God who is present in every unchanging circumstance as well.” Sara Hagerty takes her everyday life situations and shows God’s purpose and plan for each situation and more importantly shows how to listen when God speaks to your heart.

When I first started reading this book, I thought it would be another book about infertility and almost put it in my “to read later” pile, but as I kept turning the pages I couldn’t put it down because I found things that began to relate to my life. It has left me “longing to know more”. Although I have been a Christian for many, many years, I often long to feel the closeness of God in bad situations that Sara feels. I often find myself begging God to talk with me and show me the way and am often disappointed when it feels there is no answer. Sara shows through her life story you can have that kind of relationship, but it is something you have to work at and have to be willing to put God first. I think that is often the downfall of me and probably most of us, because when troubling situations arise, I forget to pray about them before I act, rather than praying after nothing I have tried works.

This is a book I will read again but this time with pen and paper as there are many scriptures listed after each chapter to help you continue your pursuit in learning God’s truths. This book could easily be used as a women’s group Bible Study.

Even though this was a difficult review for me to write, because I am struggling with so many emotions that came to surface while reading it, I would highly recommend this book especially if you are struggling with things in your life that leave you unhappy and wanting more of God in your life.

Disclosure: I was given a copy of this Book by the publisher, HarperCollins Christian Publishing, for review. I was not required to write a favorable review nor was I compensated for my review. The opinions in this review are my own.
(Posted on 10/6/2014)
Review by Kristin
Overall Rating
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
This was a very difficult book to read. A lot of the book felt like the author was whining. Have I experienced infertility? Yes. There were years that I was convinced that I couldn't have children. But did I whine, like I feel the author is doing in this book? No. Did I feel the torment of believing that I would never hold a baby of my own flesh and blood in my arms? YES!
The biggest problem that I had with this book was the fact that she was able to adopt, not just one, not just two, but FOUR children! And that still wasn't enough for her, she still cried and whined to God. Why couldn't she just say, "Yes, God, this is the motherhood that You have given me. I am the mother You have chosen for these children. It doesn't matter if they are my flesh and blood or not."
The entire book to me felt like the author couldn't accept the blessings that were right in front of her face. That in itself made it very difficult for me to read. (Posted on 9/26/2014)

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