"But because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy,
made us alive with (Jesus) Christ even when we were dead in
transgressions - it is by grace you have been saved."
(Ephesians 2:4-5)

Top 10 Book Recommendations

books

1. You Are What You Love by James K.A. Smith

“Our hearts are restless until they find their rest in you.” Using this quote from St. Augustine as a foundation, James Smith builds the case that it is our hearts rather than our heads that reveal what we truly love. This book is a fascinating look into the extent to which culture forms and shapes these loves, and how our loves need to be re-oriented toward God.

2. The Meaning of Marriage by Tim Keller

This is hands-down one of the best books on marriage I’ve ever read. Keller goes to great lengths to formulate a Biblical definition of marriage–over and against the world’s definition. If you’re looking to strengthen and grow your relationship with your spouse, look no further.

3. The Hammer of God by Bo Giertz

Although this novel was originally written in 1941, it is as fresh today as it was then. The author tells his story from the perspective of a number of pastors who served in rural Sweden over span of the 18th and 19th centuries, and it digs deep into matters of faith.

4. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

This might be my favorite novel. Set in late 19th century Russia, Anna Karenina tells the tragic tale of love lost, and its rich tapestry of complex, multi-layered characters will not leave you wanting. Don’t let the 976-page length scare you away. This one is well worth the read!

5. Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

This one goes without saying, but I thought I would throw it out there for those who haven’t read it. Anything by Lewis is worth its weight in gold–that’s only a slight exaggeration. In this book, he examines faith at its most basic level, arguing that it makes more sense to believe than not to believe. Lewis has a way of saying in a single sentence what it takes other theologians volumes to articulate, and his elegant yet simple prose still hits me anew each time I read it.

6. Watch for the Light: Readings for Advent and Christmas by Various Authors

Looking for an Advent devotional? This is the one you’re going to want to pick up. It’s a compilation of writings by a wide array of authors across both faith and time spans, and includes writings by such figures as Dietrich Bonhoeffer, T.S. Elliot, C.S. Lewis, Dorothy Day, and Madeleine L’Engle, just to name a few.

7. In the Name of Jesus by Henry Nouwen

Nouwen is an ordained Catholic priest who also served for a number of years as a chaplain. His heartfelt, hope-filled illustrations from his own experience show that we can best minister to the wounded out of our own sense of woundedness. Humility rather than power must be at the heart of our ministry.

8. A Severe Mercy by Sheldon Vanauken

In this book, the author recounts he and his wife’s unlikely friendship with C.S. Lewis, and how this great man helped guide them through the joys and trials of marriage. Tragic yet beautiful, Sheldon describes how he came to experience God’s deepest mercies in the midst of incredible pain. My wife and I read this book as part of our pre-marriage counseling, and we were both deeply moved.

9.  The Freedom of the Christian by Martin Luther

Have you ever wondered what the place of “good works” are in the life of the believer? Why do we do them if they are not meritorious? Luther opens up the Scriptures to show that good works are the natural fruit borne of those rooted in Christ, and that they are done not from compulsion, but out of our newfound freedom in the Gospel. This little “pamphlet” is an incredibly clear and eye-opening introduction to this topic.

10. Running Scared: Fear, Worry, and the God of Rest by Edward T. Welch

Have you ever felt anxious or afraid? Then this is the book for you. The author digs into Scripture to get at the root cause of our fears, showing that all worry springs from a mistrust in God. But Welch then goes on to show that the God who provided for us yesterday promises to provide for us today as well. I first read this book during a time of struggle, and have found it to be an immense comfort.

 

Leave a Reply

Current ye@r *