I always enjoy hearing what others are reading, so I thought I'd share my stack with you.
- Sally Clarkson, Own Your Life. It's no secret that I feel a strong sense of kinship with Sally Clarkson. Her books have shaped so much of my philosophy of parenting, and she is such a gentle-spirited, wise lady. While Own Your Life is not my favorite of her many books, it is still wonderful. My husband took issue with the title, because he said (and I agree), "we are not supposed to own our lives. We're supposed to surrender them to Christ." The truth is, Sally's thesis is actually that taking ownership of lives and choosing to live intentionally in every realm is done by first submitting to the Lord. Her encouragement is choose to live with bold faith and deep intention - to not allow our lives to be wasted. It's a great book that goes beyond her messages on motherhood to encompass all stages of life.
- Gloria Furman, Treasuring Christ When your Hands are Full. I love, love, love this book. Sometimes I read a book on motherhood, and, instead of encouraging me, I feel weighed down by the heavy load of all I "ought" to be doing. Have you been there? Gloria doesn't try to tell you how to be a good mama. Instead, she focuses on how the gospel message intersects with each and every motherhood challenge. She is refreshingly real and honest about the messes of daily life with little ones - and she points mothers to Christ, who is supreme over every challenge or disaster.
- Serene Allison and Pearl Barrett, Trim Health Mama. A few friends have been raving about this book, so I decided I'd better check it out. I am pretty cautious when it comes to nutrition books - because I know it is easy to jump on the bandwagon of a certain fad and then discover that the research was wrong and that a more balanced approach is wiser. Also - my husband strongly discourages major changes in our family's eating. I have tried over the years to make changes in certain areas, but I have learned that I best honor him when I balance healthy, whole-food meals with tasty treats and moderate amounts of fats and sugar. This book is a balanced and humorous approach to eating wisely while still incorporating every food group. I am actually thoroughly enjoying it!
- John MacArthur, The Silent Shepherd. I greatly appreciate MacArthur's theology and I love using his study Bible to help me through tough passages of Scripture. This book on the ministry of the Holy Spirit is helpful and sound... but I have to admit that if I read it in bed, I fall asleep. :)
- The Duggars, A Love that Multiplies. We don't have TV, so I am not a Duggar follower. But, I think Michelle Duggar is an amazing mama, and, as our family grows, I feel like I need to glean from the organizational tips and tricks of women who manage large families well. Five kiddos is a small family compared to theirs, but it seems big as I ponder the chaos that already consumes our home at times. This book was an easy read, full of personal stories and lots of wisdom about handing life's challenges with patience and grace. I want to read their first book, now, because I think it has more of the practical tidbits I was looking for.
- Francis Chan, You and Me Forever. Erik and I have been reading through this one simultaneously. As always, Chan approaches his topic with an eternal perspective. Marriage is not meant to be just enjoyed; it is meant to display the Gospel. We are still near the beginning, but I am excited about studying and growing together.