Mindy’s Good Reads 2016

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One of my life-long goals is to read an average of one book a month… Unfortunately, I read less this year than I had hoped.  Here are the best books I read in 2016:

My Favorite NonFiction Book of the Year – Parables: The Mysteries of God’s Kingdom Revealed Through the Stories Jesus Told by John Macarthur, 2015. (kingdom of God and the parables)

Favorite Fiction Book of the Year – All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, 2014. (WW2 historical novel)

Others Worth Reading (alphabetical):

 Chasing Elephants: Wrestling with the Gray Areas of Life by Brent Crowe, 2010. (decision-making principles for areas where the Bible isn’t specific)

Designed to Lead: The Church and Leadership Development by Eric Geiger and Kevin Peck, 2016. (discipleship and intentional leadership development)

Fervant: A Woman’s Battle Plan for Serious, Specific, and Strategic Prayer by Priscilla Shirer, 2015. (intentional prayer)

Jesus Was an Airborne Ranger: Finding Your Purpose Following the Warrior Christ by John McDougall and Stu Weber, 2015.  (Ranger chaplain on Jesus’ mission and kingdom)

Simplify: Ten Practices to Unclutter Your Soul by Bill Hybels, 2015. (life management)

Trusting God: Even When Life Hurts by Jerry Bridges, 2008. (sovereignty and trust, class text)

Type Talk: The 16 Personality Types That Determine How We Live, Love, and Work by Otto Kroeger, 1989. (Myers Briggs type analysis in-depth)

You Lost Me: Why Young Christians Are Leaving the Church by David Kinnaman, 2011. (why twentysomethings leave and how to bring them back)

Invisible Girls: A Memoir by Sarah Thebarge, 2014. (Ethiopian refugees in the USA)

Did you have a favorite this year?  Please comment and share – I love recommendations!

Mindy’s Good Reads 2015

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One of my life-long goals is to read an average of one book a month… And I have my book club to thank for keeping me on track!  Here’s what I read in 2015:

These three were absolutely extraordinary:

Epic of Eden by Sandra Richter (Old Testament theology)

Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus by Nabeel Qureshi (Muslim intellectual encounters Jesus)

The Meaning of Marriage by Timothy Keller (marriage)

The rest of the list (alphabetical):

Boys in the Boat by Daniel Brown (Olympic rowing team)

Burial Rites by Hannah Kent (Iceland, murder mystery)

Counting by 7’s by Holly Sloan (Young adult, brilliant child in foster care)

Lineage of Grace by Francine Rivers (women in the genealogy of Christ)

Lord, Is It Warfare? Teach Me to Stand by Kay Arthur (Ephesians, spiritual warfare)

Orange is the New Black by Piper Kerman (autobiography that inspired the prison series)

Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline (American orphans 1800s)

Return of the Prodigal by Henri Nouwen (analysis of the prodigal son parable)

The Best Yes by Lysa Terkeurst (life management)

The Strategy of Satan by Warren Wiersbe (my fall teaching topic)

Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks (England, plague in the middle ages)

Did you have a favorite book in 2015?  I’d love to hear about it!

Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus

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Last night my book club sat down to discuss Nabeel Qureshi’s SeekingAllahbook “Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus”.  Two hours was no where near enough time to discuss all that we learned and were curious about… as my one friend said, “We need a book club slumber party to finish talking about this book!”  You can read the reviews on Amazon but we talked about Muslim family dynamics, the vast and varied cultural differences between Islam and the West, the basics of Islam, teenagers in a belief crisis, friendship, evangelism, dreams and visions, the cost of following Christ, the great commission, the Trinity and organic chemistry, 9/11 and it’s aftermath, apologetics, wearing hijab, and so much more.  It’s worth reading.

http://www.amazon.com/Seeking-Allah-Finding-Jesus-Christianity/dp/0310515025

Virtual Summer Book Club

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So my Bible study group is doing a “virtual book club” for MeaningMarriageNormslthe summer.  We are reading Timothy Keller’s highly acclaimed book “The Meaning of Marriage”.  It’s kind of an experiment… So far there are about 20 of us and we plan to use a closed Facebook group for discussions… we’ll see how it goes. Discussion of chapter one is scheduled for the week of June 16. I just thought I’d invite you to join us, if that’s something interesting for you. If not, that’s totally fine too! Reply below if you’re interested in joining us.

Leadership Lessons From The Boys in The Boat

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My book club just finished reading “The Boys in the Boat” about the BoysInBoatunlikely rowing team that won a gold medal in the 1936 Olympics.  As I prepared to lead the discussion, I came across this fantastic article that draws eight Christian leadership lessons from the book.  I highly recommend the article, even if you haven’t read the book!

http://www.christianitytoday.com/le/2014/september-online-only/boys-in-boat.html?paging=off

Lineage Of Grace

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Book club read this month – so awesome! I’ve gotten through the stories of Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, and halfway through Bathsheba… It’s like the Old Testament has gone from black and white to color!  Suddenly the cultural context has come to life and it reads like a modern day reality tv show… some crazy stuff happened in the Old Testament! Francine Rivers is extremely diligent about staying faithful to what is known in scripture, so I can recommend this without hesitation.

http://www.amazon.com/Lineage-Grace-Stories-Unlikely-Eternity/dp/0842356320/ref=pd_bxgy_b_img_y

Mindy’s Good Reads 2014

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Two years ago a pastor friend posted a list of books he’d read that year.  It was inspiring.  I thought I should post my list too –  except, ummm… I had only read two books that year (2012).  I was appalled.  Utterly appalled.  I swore I would do better.  I started a book club – Thank you for keeping me reading Thirsty Girls!  I kept my book in the car for when I had an extra hour at soccer practice.  I limited the time I spent on Facebook.  I started reading at night instead of scrolling on my gadget.

I am so happy to share with you the books I have read in 2014 (and a few from the end of 2013).  If I don’t like them, I don’t finish them, so if they made the list then I generally liked them!

GOOD READS 2014 (alphabetical)

Nonfiction:

An Invisible Thread by Laura Schroff (true story, street kid changes her life)

Big God: What Happens When We Trust Him? by Britt Merrick (Hebrews)

Called Out of the Darkness by Anne Rice (autobiography)

Crazy Busy by Kevin DeYoung (life management)

Daring Greatly by Brene Brown (how vulnerability transforms us)

Erasing Hell: What God Said About Eternity and The Things We Made Up by Francis Chan. (doctrine)

Gifted Hands by Ben Carson (autobiography)

Gods At War by Kyle Idleman (idolatry)

Live Faithfully: A Study of James by Heitzig and Rose (James study)

One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp (thankfulness)

Radical by David Platt (Christian living)

The Beauty of Broken by Elisa Morgan (autobiography)

The Magnificent Obsession by Anne Graham Lotz (Abraham)

Unglued by Lisa Terkeurst (emotional control)

Wired That Way: The Comprehensive Personality Plan by Marita Littauer.

Fiction & Young Adult:

Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card

The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

The Running Dream by Wendelin VanDraanen (YA)

The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis

Wonder by R.J. Palacio (YA)

Comment and tell me your favorite books from this year!  I’d love to hear from you.