Reading is always part of a new year's goals, at least for many it is. What shall we read to better ourselves, to help us grow closer to God, to enrich our lives and entertain us? As a church staff we've tried to recommend the best resources throughout the year with books-of-the-month, and other important and pertinent resources to aid your fight for faith and deepen your love for Christ. We wanted to provide you this holiday season with a list of ten new(ish) resources you should definitely check out, and add to your reading lists this new year. May 2019 be Christ-full in all of our lives and our families, and in our church.
Pick up any or ALL of the following, and let us know what you think as you read! They are given in no particular order of importance.
Prayer by John Onwuchekwa. What better way to start the new year that with a book that focuses on your prayer life. This is one of the 9 Marks "Building Healthy Churches" series. It's a super manageable length (144 pages), and it focuses very uniquely on the necessity and benefits of prayer for a church family - on the corporate life of the church. Highly recommended.
12 Ways Your Phone is Changing You by Tony Reinke. This came out in 2017 and was one of our books-of-the-month this year at the recommendation of Pastor Jordan. It's poignant, current, and addresses a big part of our modern lives that goes un-addressed. You'll be challenged and convicted, and find yourself saying "me too" to a lot (if you use the internet or own a smart phone, that is).
The Conviction to Lead by Albert Mohler. This has been a favorite of our staff and several in our church for a few years now. But this remains one of, if not the best book on Christian leadership many of us have read. If you desire to lead in culture, or in any capacity in the church, give this one a read. The chapters and short and pack a nice punch, and address leadership from some angles you wouldn't expect.
All That's Good: Recovering the Lost Art of Discernment by Hannah Anderson. This is a brand new book on practicing a discipline much forgotten in our culture today. And that Christians need very much, maybe now more than ever. Hannah Anderson helps a Christian address the do's and don'ts of life with biblical wisdom.
This Changes Everything: How the Gospel Transforms the Teen Years. For the student in your life, or if you're a teenager yourself, Jaquelle Crowe writes as a teenager who wants, and wants her peers, to get serious about the gospel and about Christ. She's super engaging, and brings a very important message to bear. She also has a great website and podcast - check them out here!
Suffering: Gospel Hope When Life Doesn't Make Sense by Paul Tripp. Our church loves Paul Tripp. He did a marriage conference for us two years ago, we recommend his books often, and his books have helped many of us. This new one looks to be excellent. Don't miss it.
A Small Book About a Big Problem by Ed Welch. This was an excellent, small book addressing the SUPER common struggle with anger many (or maybe all?) of us fight on some level. This would work great as a devotional. Welch writes pastorally, so you really feel like you're just having breakfast and talking over the issue.
Canon Revisited by Michael J. Kruger. For the reader who wants to dive deep. This book has been out for a few years, but remains excellent. Kruger discusses the reliability of the New Testament books, and why we accept the ones we do as the inspired ones. He adeptly and engagingly demonstrates that the question is not one of historicity or cultural evolution, but a theological one. A right theology of God leads one, and leads His church, to accept these particular books as reliable, without error, living, and inspired.
Identity Theft: Reclaiming the Truth of Our Identity in Christ by Trillia Newbell, Melissa Kruger, Jen Wilkin, and others. Trillia was our Women's Retreat speaker this past Spring, and has encouraged many of us with her books. Needless to say, we love her and her ministry. She contributes to this new book along with a bunch of awesome women, exposing our false notions of identity and encouraging us with how to live in our new one in Christ.
Steal Away Home by Matt Carter and Aaron Ivey. If you're into history or biography at all, check this one out. This is a new history about Charles Spurgeon and Thomas Johnson, an English preacher and an American slave, and their friendship. It's a largely untold story, super well-written, and compelling as all-get-out.
So there you have it: ten mostly new books to put on your reading list for the new year. There will be more posts to come on recommended books and resources, but for now, check these ones out. We pray they encourage you and increase your love and devotion to Christ this year! Read with us!