this morning over coffee, matt asked me, “what are you reading?” he’s the third person this week to ask me that. do you people really lead lives so dull that you need a pastor to recommend a book to you? dude!
but actually, i am thankful for the question. i read. all the time. and you should too. reading is an age-old, but never-old way to fill your brain, and ultimately your spirit, with things that matter. in reading for the next sunday series, i came across these words:
what comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.
if these words are true (from a.w. tozer, in his book, the knowledge of the holy), then that alone is a good reason to read. maybe we all know this instinctively – and maybe that’s why so many people ask me what i’m reading. so, why don’t i tell you. but rather than give you the books in my current reading stack, let me give you some titles that will help you think a little more deeply – and a little more orthodoxly – about God. when i head for the beach for a week each summer, i take a mindless novel, since theology is pretty much everyday stuff for me. but maybe your week at the beach would be a good time to think a little more deeply about God. if anyone is really interested, then, here is a summer reading list to consider:
A. W. Tozer, The Knowledge of the Holy
John Piper, Desiring God
John Piper, The Pleasures of God
J. I. Packer, Knowing God
J. I. Packer, Concise Theology
Brian McLaren, The Secret Message of Jesus
N. T. Wright, Simply Christian
C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
(why do all these guys use their initials?)
note: these are not for the faint of mind – you may find yourself reading many of these paragraphs more than once.
if you’re looking for something a little lighter, but still significant, try one of these:
Josh Mc Dowell, More Than a Carpenter
Andy Stanley, Am I Good Enough? (formerly How Good is Good Enough?)
Paul Little, Know Why You Believe
Lee Strobel, The Case for Christ
followers of Jesus lead others to become followers of Jesus. it’s not just the job of pastors, teachers, and elders. it’s the call on each of our lives by the same God who created us, who saved us, and who sustains us. we are supposed to make noise about our faith, just as we are to live according to the beliefs of our faith. but a lot of the time, we are not sure exactly what that faith really teaches below the surface of Jesus loves me this i know. books like this will give you the assurance and the confidence to live according to God’s will and to speak to others about the truth.
so i invite you to dig into one of these titles this summer. grow your faith. focus your mind. strengthen your convictions. wrestle with God.
oh yeah, and have fun!