Now that I'm not busy writing a book, I've been enjoying some extra time to read several I've had on the shelf for a while. So I thought I'd list a few that have been particularly great, as well as a few I'm in the middle of or hoping to read soon.
Super(free)Woman: From Fundamentalist to Failure to Faith - by Marci Preheim. I've mentioned this one on the blog before, and am hoping to have a full review up eventually. If you're looking for something to give the mother(s) in your life for Mother's Day, give them the gift of freedom. Freedom from the pressures placed upon women by other women. Freedom from conformity to outside rules and expectations. Freedom from enslavement to the opinions of others. I love this quote from the book: "Depending on Christ's righteousness is the joyful alternative to human achievement. The beauty of the gospel is realized in the humility that admits we have nothing to offer--no righteousness to bring. We know this, but don't live it in front of each other. Instead we try to prove the opposite. Covering our sin and wearing a mask of external righteousness, we fool others into thinking we are godly." The book is accessible and honest--Preheim pulls no punches, but lands them with love and grace. It's as if you're sitting across from her--something I've been privileged to do in our church body--and she is lovingly exhorting you to abide in Christ and rest in Him. Get it, read it, buy one for all your friends. Seriously.
Delighting in the Trinity: An Introduction to the Christian Faith by Michael Reeves. This one is so good. I wish I could have read it years ago. The wit, beauty and joy with which it is written makes the author's excitement contagious to the reader. It takes me a while to read books, but I picked this one up on a Tuesday and finished it on Thursday.
The Freedom of Self Forgetfulness by Tim Keller. Coming in at just 45 pages, this is a great one for the busy reader. Keller builds a case for the believer to think of himself less (not think less of himself), using Paul's words from I Cor. 3:21-4:7. Not only does Keller diagnose the problem, something at which he is incredibly gifted. He also graciously and lovingly points out the solution.
Because He Loves Me: How Christ Transforms Our Daily Life by Elyse Fitzpatrick. In two parts, Fitzpatrick looks at how God's love transforms both our identities and our lives. I have about half of this book underlined, so it is hard to come up with quotes or highlights. But this is a freedom-granting, Christ-exalting book from the heart of a writer who wants her readers to know the deep, amazing love of the Father for His adopted children, and the Son for His bride.
Suburbianity: What Have We Done to the Gospel? Can We Find Our Way Back to Biblical Christianity? - by Byron Yawn. Byron is my pastor. I know his heart for his church, and this book was written as a cry for us--suburban Christians in the heart of the Bible belt--to recognize that what we think is Christianity is actually "suburbianity." Living in Nashville, we get it. There are more churches than trees. He writes, "You can't assume people are less needy of the gospel if a church happens to be on every corner. Chances are they've never actually heard the gospel." This is true here, even where everyone goes to church and claims to be a Christian. Byron's heart is to awaken the church to a vibrant understanding of the true gospel--and understanding that compels us to go next door to our affluent suburban neighbors and actually share the gospel with them. It's happening in my church, and it's beautiful and exciting.
*Full disclosure--if you buy one of these books from the links on this page, I will get a tiny profit, further feeding my book addiction. If you would like to support said addiction, feel free to use these links. If you want to free me from the addiction, you might not want to use them.
So what are you reading right now, or what would you recommend I read next?