Here are the books I am currently reading, along with my thoughts about them. Please note that I may not agree with the entirety of the authors’ views and ideas, but overall I thought the books were very helpful and/or worthwhile.
Liturgy of the Ordinary: Sacred Practices in Everyday Life
In the overlooked moments and routines of our day, we can become aware of God’s presence in surprising ways. How do we embrace the sacred in the ordinary and the ordinary in the sacred? Framed around one ordinary day, this book explores daily life through the lens of liturgy, small practices, and habits that form us. Each chapter looks at something-making the bed, brushing her teeth, losing her keys-that the author does every day. Drawing from the diversity of her life of ministry as well as that of friend, wife, and mother, Tish Harrison Warren opens up a practical theology of the everyday. Each activity is related to a spiritual practice as well as an aspect of our Sunday worship. This book will help you discover the holiness of your every day. To purchase, CLICK HERE.
Celebration of Discipline: The Path to Spiritual Growth
I re-read this book once a year. It is a classic that is thought to be the best modern book on Christian spirituality and was described by Christianity Today as one of the ten best books of the twentieth century. In it, Richard Foster explores the classic “disciplines,” or central spiritual practices, of the Christian faith by placing them in three movements of the spirit. There are the inward Disciplines of meditation, prayer, fasting, and study that offer avenues for personal examination and change. The outward Disciplines of simplicity, solitude, submission, and service prepare us to help make the world a better place. The corporate Disciplines of confession, worship, guidance, and celebration bring us nearer to one another and to God. Highly recommended! To purchase, CLICK HERE.
The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma
Not all trauma is what you’d typically think. We are traumatized in a variety of ways and our body keeps the score. I have found this book extremely helpful in dealing with the death of several close relatives in the last two years and also when reliving some of my childhood memories of being a child of divorce as I go through my mother’s items she left behind.
In The Body Keeps the Score, the author uses recent scientific advances to show how trauma literally reshapes both body and brain, compromising sufferers’ capacities for pleasure, engagement, self-control, and trust. He explores innovative treatments that offer new paths to recovery by activating the brain’s natural neuroplasticity. In this book you will discover the tremendous power of our relationships both to hurt and to heal—and find new hope for the future. To purchase, CLICK HERE.
My Dear Hamilton: A Novel of Eliza Schuyler Hamilton
I have started a new habit of reading one fiction book per month. This was my most recent and one of my favorites of 2021. It tells the epic story of Eliza Schuyler Hamilton, the wife of Alexander Hamilton. She was a revolutionary woman who, like her new nation, struggled to define herself in the wake of war, betrayal, and tragedy. In this “can’t-put-it-down novel” the authors used thousands of letters and original sources to tell Eliza’s story as it’s never been told before. She was not only in the middle of a social scandal, but she was a founding mother who shaped an American legacy in her own right. To purchase, CLICK HERE.
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