Over the years, I have come to learn that certain practices have become essential in my life as I grow as a follower of Jesus Christ. One of those practices is becoming an avid reader. I am typically involved in a yearly Bible reading plan as well as reading works by trusted Christian authors. If I could challenge you to grow in your faith in one way in 2013, I would challenge you to grow in wisdom through reading. Therefore, I have compiled a list of several books that I have loved over the years that have helped to shape my theology, practice and outlook on what it means to be a devoted disciple of Jesus Christ. The list of books is in no particular order. However, I have coded the books for your convenience based on what I believe to be the reading difEiculty level. Some of the books are great for all people and a relatively easy read. Some of these books will take some mental wading though and a lot of extra thinking. (It took me a year to read Renovation of the Heart and another several months of trying to figure out what it said.) A book coded “1” is great for everyone and I would strongly suggest you read it. A book coded “2” is for those who want to dig a little deeper and think a little more. A book coded “3” is pretty tough but well worth the time.
1. Not a Fan-‐ Becoming a completely Devoted Follower of Jesus-‐ Kyle Idleman (1)
2. The Barbarian Way: Unleashed the Untamed Faith Within- Erwin Raphael McManus (1)
3. Integrity: The Courage to Meet the Demands of Reality- Dr. Henry Cloud (2)
4. Crazy Love-‐ Francis Chan (1)
5. The Cost of Discipleship-‐ Dietrich Bonhoeffer (3)
6. Knowing God-‐ J.I. Packer (3)
7. Spiritual Leadership-‐ J.Oswald Sanders (3)
8. Renovation of the Heart-‐ Dallas Willard (3)
9. The Jesus I Never Knew-‐ Phillip Yancey (2)
10. If You Want to Walk on Water, You’ve Got to Get Out of the Boat-‐ John Ortberg (1)
11. After You Believe: Why Christians Character Matters -‐ N.T. Wright (3)
12. Mere Christianity-‐ C.S. Lewis (2)
13. The Pursuit of God-‐ A.W. Tozer (1)
If you like these books, keep in mind that these authors have each written several books on relevant theological and practical Christians issues. I would also love to know what books are shaping your life as a disciple so feel free to email me any time. God Bless.
Josh Kesler, Senior Pastor