I had been trying to write a real blog post for about a month or so, but I think I use all of my words throughout the day and can never manage to get them out the way I want when I do have a chance to sit down and write. I love the routines of the school year, and I love what I do, but I miss having the mental capacity to really write during the school year. I’d like to try to get better at disciplining myself to write even when I don’t want to write, but that may take a few months/years. I did finally manage to write one this week, one that was fairly raw and real. Read it here.
Anyway, I didn’t manage to read all of the books I’d planned on reading this summer, but I did read a lot of good ones. I always like to document what I read because it helps me remember what went on during that season of my life and what I was learning in that specific season. So, here are a few of the books that I read during my “Summer of Interviews”, as I’m affectionately calling it :), that were really good!
- Messy Beautiful Friendship by Christine Hoover. I have probably recommended this book fifty times. I’m not even kidding when I say that. It is SO good. This book is everything I’ve wanted in regards to navigating female friendships in the church as an adult.
Everything in our culture works against friendship. We move at such a rapid pace and live such over-scheduled lives. Whereas marriage, work, and family are permanent commitments, friendship is a voluntary commitment and is therefore easy to neglect. If we’re going to leave room on our dance cards for friendship, we’re going to have to be firmly committed to it and to going against the grain of our culture. – Christine Hoover
- Adopted for Life by Russell Moore. While this book is geared towards those who are interested in adopting, I found this to be a great resource for those who are adopted. It was incredibly refreshing in some ways for me. I also think that it is a great resource for those who are looking to adopt. However, even if adoption isn’t on your radar, this is still a good book for those of us in Christ–to remember and understand better our adoption as sons and daughters of God.
An adoption culture in our churches advances the cause of life even beyond the individual lives of the children adopted. – Russell Moore
Finding your birth parents, though, won’t tell you who you are. Who you are has been forged by more than genes, coming also from thousands of dinner table conversations, hallway arguments, church group retreats, quiet moments of prayer, and much more. Above all, you are who you are in Christ. – Russell Moore
- Struck by Russ Ramsey. I read most of this while I was at summer camp with our student ministry. When they were off swimming during free time, I was reading because this was so good. Ramsey tells his story of “encountering death”, and I have to say that this book reminded me that we all suffer in some way or another–and we all will. It’s how we respond and cling to Christ that changes us in those times.
If my affliction was a severe mercy to awaken in me my need of God, the it is a wise gift from a loving hand. – Russ Ramsey
- Alive in Him by Gloria Furman. I’d heard a lot about Gloria Furman from my friends with young kids. She’s written a book about motherhood that is apparently a very good one. My pastor gave me this book in the spring, and I decided to read it this summer. I enjoyed Furman’s writing and learning more about the immeasurable love of Christ.
It’s a good thing that eternity will last forever, because it will take us that long to experience all the dimensions of Christ’s love for us. – Gloria Furman
- Not Yet Married by Marshall Segal. I randomly came across this on Amazon one day, a day or two after it came out. I am really glad I bought it, and while there have been many articles and books on singleness, this is one I wholeheartedly recommend. Segal’s theology is sound as well as his advice and wisdom. Sure, Segal is married, but he gets it, and I really appreciated his consistency in pointing his readers back to Christ.
In Jesus, God is always and only doing good to us. He loves our lasting joy in Him much more than he loves our temporary comfort today. – Marshall Segal
- Unparalleled by Jared Wilson. I read this book because Jared Wilson was the speaker at summer camp. I wanted to have a general idea of what Wilson would be speaking about, so I read it the week before we left. While I enjoyed reading the book, I almost wished I hadn’t until after camp because Wilson practically preached the book in his messages. Which was totally fine, but I felt, at times, that I knew his point before he made it. Anyway, this book is about why Christianity is unique, which was really intriguing to me. Wilson addresses different topics–the Trinity, human life, sin/conviction–and discusses how no other religion is like Christianity. I definitely recommend this book to anyone who didn’t have the chance to listen to “Evening Jared”, as we call him at church, (the morning speaker at camp was also named Jared) preach.
Biblically speaking, Christianity is not an individualistic faith. Christians have a personal relationship with God, but it is not meant to be a private relationship with God. – Jared Wilson
Well, those are just some of the books I read this summer that I’d definitely recommend if anyone was looking for a new read.
- Unseen by Sara Hagerty
- Rejoicing in Christ by Michael Reeves
- Passion and Purity by Elisabeth Elliot
- The Leader in Me by Stephen Covey (I’m reading this for work, but it’s friendly/has versions that are friendly for the non-educators.)
Wanting to Read (a.k.a. I’ve read the introduction already):
- Baptists in America by Thomas Kidd and Barry Hankins
- The Envy of Eve by Melissa Kruger
- Assimilate or Go Home by D.L. Mayfield
- The Last Season by Stuart Stevens
- Evangelicalism Divided by Iain Murray
What are you reading these days? Any recommendations?