In my home, my dad had his favourite chair. He spent many hours there praying, and reading. Whether it was his Bible, Pierre Berton, or a theological work, that chair was dad’s reading chair.
Dad taught me to love reading. Whether it was David Wilkerson’s The Cross & The Switchblade or Corrie Ten Boom’s The Hiding Place, I grew in my love for books.
Maybe you’re an avid reader. Maybe the eBulletin is long enough for you. Reading, however, will sharpen your mind, broaden your world, and enliven your spirit. As someone once said, “A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only once.”
While I’ll recommend a few books that I’ve read recently, make the Bible your first go-to book. You can find some helpful reading plans here on our website.
Here are a few books I’ve read that you might want to consider reading this summer:
Messy Beautiful Friendship by Christine Hoover (find it on amazon)
While women long for deep and lasting friendships, they often find them challenging to make. Insecurity and isolation complicates friendship. Christine Hoover offers a biblical view of friendship that makes room for the messiness of life and the challenges of various life stages and hectic schedules. From what holds you back to how you build deep relationships, Hoover helps you embrace the people God has brought into your life and enjoy people. This book had some pages that forever changed my view of friendship.
Katharina and Martin Luther: The Radical Marriage of a Runaway Nun and a Renegade Monk by Michelle Derusha (find it on amazon)
Luther said that he married to spite the pope, the devil, and to seal his vows to God. That notion of marriage sounds less than romantic. And yet this unlikely couple had a glorious marriage that fueled the Protestant Reformation. Part biography, part history, this book shows how an unlikely marriage worked and blossomed into a tender story of love. The effects of this marriage still reverberates today. Through the triumphs and trials, gladness and griefs, this book will make you appreciate the gift of marriage.
How to Get Unstuck: Breaking Free from Barriers to your Productivity by Matt Perman (find it on amazon)
Everyone wants to feel like they are making a difference. But feelings of being overwhelmed, overloaded, and overscheduled keep us from moving forward. How do you get unstuck and make a difference? With 10 principles grounded in a vision of the gospel, you will be helped to be effective for the glory of God. By starting with the Bible and using contemporary research, Perman helps his readers to live an integrated life as you accomplish God’s purposes in God’s way for God’s glory.
Even in Our Darkness: A Story of Beauty in a Broken Life by Jack Deere (find it on amazon)
A former Dallas Seminary professor and author opens up about his broken life. In the midst of loss, tragedy, and sin, this memoir paints a picture of what it means to know God and be known by him. Deere shares how his family fell apart following his father’s suicide, how a successful ministry career was tainted with pride, how his son’s suicide and wife’s alcoholism broke him to see his own addictions and find true healing in Jesus Christ. The darkness is heavy, but the beauty of God’s redeeming grace shines through this life.
Please note: this book has some offensive language and discusses the sexual sin in and around Jack’s life. While this book doesn’t glory in sin, it doesn’t shy away from its painful realities in order to show the relentless love of God who graciously takes broken people and makes them look like Jesus bit by bit.
For the curious, here’s what I’ve picked up for the summer and early fall:
Uncommon Grounds: The History of Coffee and How it Transformed Our World by Mark Pendergrast (find it on amazon)
I love coffee. Especially good coffee. So a book on how coffee changed the world should be fun, right?
The Coddling of the American Mind: How Good Intentions and Bad Ideas are Setting Up a Generation for Failure by Greg Lukianoff and Jonathan Haidt (find it on amazon)
Sociologists note we have a generation that is failing to launch. As I think about preparing to launch my children, this read should be illuminating.
The Gospel Comes with a House Key by Rosaria Butterfield (find it on amazon)
How do you open your home to be radically hospitable? Rosaria Butterfield shares her story of her life-changing encounter with Christians who welcomed her to the table to display love and faith. She encourages and equips Christians to do the same.
Take up and read!
As we gather for Sunday worship, we want you to meet with God and be transformed by the Word. Prepare your heart by reading the passage and listening to the songs for Sunday.