6 In Book Reviews

A Lenten Request: Books About Faith

Most years I find that the Lenten period sneaks up on me (does this happen to anyone else??) I always associate Easter with spring and sun and warmer weather, but completely forget that the beginning of this spiritual season starts in the dead cold of winter. Luckily, my church’s communication department does an excellent job reminding us about Ash Wednesday : )

This was the first Ash Wednesday service we’ve attended at our new church and it was a unique experience. I’m used to a low key, reflective service with the distribution of ashes, but they included additional elements of physical touch. During the service, the congregation was invited to come forward and interact with water, oil, salt, and clay. Each of these was accompanied by a short reflective question about how God is seeking to reach out to you or change you during these 40+ days. After a time, we were invited back up to receive our ashes: repent and believe in the Gospel!


That leads me to my personal choice for recognizing the Lenten season. I believe it’s important to acknowledge this lead-up period and use the time to reconnect with your faith and look forward to Jesus’ death and resurrection at Easter. In the past, I’ve given up various foods (peanut butter!!), but have found more value in adding something to my life. Therefore, I’ve decided this year to read at least two spiritual / faith related books over the next few weeks.

Unfortunately I don’t know where to begin!! I know there are a multitude of options out there and have seen a few on various blogs and websites, but I’m curious which ones are near and dear to your hearts. I don’t really have any criteria, just hoping to find a few that will enhance my relationship with God, teach me something about my faith, or provide new ways to challenge me.

If you have any suggestions for me, I’d love to hear them : )


  • Reply
    February 13, 2016 at 9:06 am

    There are two books I would suggest. The first is “The Greatest Gift”, by Ann Voskamp. It is the story of Christmas, but one that I think is relevant at any time of the year. My copy is so full of sticky notes, I always find something new that speaks to me.

    Ann Voskamp also wrote “One Thousand Gifts”, which you may also like.

    The second book, is Jesus Calling, by Sarah Young. It is a very special and unique daily devotional. I don’t think you would have any trouble just jumping in! The book is available as an app on your phone, or in Kindle form. My library has the Kindle version, that may be worth looking into if you’d like to see what it is about.

    I am a big fan of the daily devotional. It’s a small way to connect with God each and every day. I’m often surprised by how the message seems meant just for me at that moment, or how it takes me on a path I hadn’t known I needed to follow. I guess what I’m saying is if these don’t work for you, go to a bookstore, pick a bunch that catch your eye, find a comfy chair and look through them until you find the one that calls your name. That and a daily decovional is always a good way to start!

    I hope these help!

    • Reply
      February 14, 2016 at 3:17 pm

      Thank you so much for these suggestions! I’ve heard about Ann Voskamp but have never read any of her books. I think I’ll try her first! Plus, The Greatest Gift would fit nicely into the “book set during Christmas” category of my book challenge : )

    • Reply
      March 4, 2016 at 12:29 pm

      I just ordered The Greatest Gift! Very excited to get started.

  • Reply
    February 14, 2016 at 5:39 pm

    I HIGHLY recommend any books by Holley Gerth. I think I mentioned her once or twice (or possibly a thousand times) during our small group. She has a book called “You’re Already Amazing” that I have had on my shelf for a few years and have been looking for the right time to read. Actually, I think I have all of her books on my self – most not yet read. I love her. I read her daily encouragements and feel like she’s one of my girl friends!!!

    I’m also planning to read “Scary Close” by Donald Miller. It’s a book recommended by the To Write Love on Her Arms guys … and my brother (but he hasn’t read it yet either!)

    “Let’s All be Brave” by Annie F. Downs is on my shelf waiting for me to crack open.

    If you read any of these, let me know, I’ll read them at the same time. HEY! We could do a virtual book club with any of these, if you want!

    • Reply
      February 16, 2016 at 8:16 am

      Thanks for the suggestions!! I’ve heard of Let’s All Be Brave, but never actually looked into it. I’ll check that out and see if any of Holley Gerth’s jump out at me. I’ll let you know which ones I pick! How does a virtual book club work??

      • Reply
        February 20, 2016 at 6:30 pm

        I don’t know how that would work! Haha! It’s just that your too far away from me now!

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