Thin Stories: July Book Reviews

I love summer reading. In the midst of the craziness of moving, the few minutes I sneak in between packing boxes have been a wonderful respite. Snuggling up with my puppy at my feet, coffee, and a book cultivates a feeling of peace and calm. It’s a wonderful way to start my day.

If you’re looking for a way to start your day, I recommend it involves a book. Taking a few minutes to read Scripture and a chapter from a book centers your spirit around your faith and helps jumpstart your mind.

Here are a few of my summer readings:

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Disciplines of a Godly Woman by Barbara Hughes

The apostle Paul wrote about beating our bodies into submission. The Christian faith is also compared to running the race of life. This book lays out principles for discipling our lives around the virtues of the Christian life. It focuses on your mind, your contentment, and your community.

Barbara Hughes writes with a timeless air of grace and poise. Because she roots her work so firmly in Scripture, it applies to women of all generations and is not dated.

I want to be clear, this book abstains from laying out a set of rules that we must follow. It is very grace-focused. Everything is rooted in the grace of God and the work of Christ on the cross. Our acts are a response to His work, not an act of salvation.

Bonus: There are reflection/discussion questions at the end of each chapter. That makes it ideal for a Bible study or for a mentor relationship.

The Meaning of Marriage: Facing the Complexities of Commitment with the Wisdom of God by Tim Keller

This is by far my favorite marriage book. Instead of a collection of techniques that may or may not work, this book focuses on the relationship between Christ and His Church and how our marriages reflect this beautiful relationship.

This bird’s eye view of marriage puts in perspective the opportunity for sanctification that this unique relationship provides. The focus on God’s work in our hearts, not our spouse’s bad habits, was incredibly refreshing. The Meaning of Marriage is a must-read for anyone who is married, engaged, or considering getting marriage at some point in their life. It puts the meaning of marriage, the glory of God, into clear perspective.

ESV Reader’s Bible

This is a beautiful way to read Scripture. The pages are of free of verse numbers, making it considerably more natural to read through this as it was written, as a letter. While there is a reason to stop and focus on a single verse or two, there is something to be said for taking in the whole picture to understand the arc of what is being said in a specific verse.

It is not everyone’s cup of tea, but I have greatly enjoyed digging into Scripture this way.

Present Over Perfect: Leaving Behind Frantic for a Simpler, More Soulful Way of Living by Shauna Niequist

Okay, we actually talked about this one last month. Since then, I’ve seen so many of you share on Facebook that you’ve started reading through this. Some of you have even ordered the study guide.

If you’re currently reading Present Over Perfect, I’d love to hear, what is your favorite part? If not, what are you currently reading?

Recent Book Reviews: 

On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness (The Wingfeather Saga)
Roots and Sky: A Journey Home in Four Seasons

Silence: A Novel (Picador Modern Classics)
Liturgy of the Ordinary: Sacred Practices in Everyday Life
Through His Eyes: God’s Perspective on Women in the Bible

The Story of God’s Love for You
Manage Your Day-to-Day: Build Your Routine, Find Your Focus, and Sharpen Your Creative Mind (The 99U Book Series)
Ancient-Future Time: Forming Spirituality through the Christian Year

The Broken Way: A Daring Path into the Abundant Life
Never Unfriended: The Secret to Finding & Keeping Lasting Friendships
Les Miserables (Signet Classics)

Present Over Perfect: Leaving Behind Frantic for a Simpler, More Soulful Way of Living
Seasons of Waiting: Walking by Faith When Dreams Are Delayed




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