Monday, January 2, 2012

Reading for the New Year

I’m so grateful to be beginning a new year and looking forward to all of the wonderful blessings to come in 2012. In preparation for this year, I cannot help but to reflect on the books I read in 2011 that stand out as having made a major impact in my life over the last twelve months. Here are some of my favorites…

The Great Physicians Rx
by Jordan Rubin

This book contains a wealth of information for personal health including areas of diet, fitness, hygiene, emotional, and spiritual well-being. In it Jordan describes how he overcame a personal health crisis and ways we can improve or maintain our own personal health.

I’m currently reading Jordan’s new book: Live Beyond Organic .

It is a highly motivating and inspiring book filled with the most up-to-date information for maintaining a truly healthy lifestyle. In my reading thus far, Jordan seems to cut to the chase and give you the meat of the information in a clear and positive way that is encouraging and instructive on how to truly change your diet and life. Click the highlighted link above to purchase and search the website for other great nutritional products…and expect a post very soon about the wonderful Beyond Organic foods I’ve been enjoying over the last several weeks!

One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are
by Ann Voskamp

I have quoted Ann several times on my blog and cannot even begin to express just how much reading her book has touched my life. I was so encouraged to trust God, believe that all things DO work together for the good of those who love God and who are called according to His purpose, and look closely to see God’s abundant blessings in the most simple things…to change my perspective, to open my hands and receive what He gives, it is ok to lament in a Biblical way, and it is essential to praise God in and through and for all things. After reading Ann’s book I began to keep a gratitude journal that has awakened me to the abundant blessings day in and day out that God so graciously lavishes upon me.

God’s Threshing Floor: Moving from Fruitful to Useful!
by Nelson Hannah

When I first heard about this book, I knew immediately that it was a MUST READ! It scared me a little at first because the threshing floor is where the grain is separated from the chaff and I wasn’t sure just how much more “threshing” I wanted to endure. It turned out to be a time of mostly reflecting on difficult, stress-filled, uncertain times where I can look back and say, “oh, that is what God was doing there” or “I see how I was ignorant or disobedient or in need of refinement and God was working through that to bring me to a more abundant place”. I think it has also prepared me for future times of threshing that will most surely come. In this book, Nelson Hannah goes through the threshing floors of the Bible and explains how God uses circumstances to separate, refine and make us ready to be useful in His kingdom, just as grain must go through a separating, refining and baking process to become bread that is nourishing.

Waking the Dead: The Glory of a Heart Fully Alive
by John Eldridge

This book captivated me from the very first page. I literally could not put it down and read it in a couple of days. I devoured it. It became so very personal to me. John Eldridge has a way of taking familiar fairy tales and stories and making correlations to our lives, our hopes, our fears and our relationships with others and with God. This book is a very real wakeup call to the fierce spiritual battle we are in, the importance of staying connected to others who share our faith, and the power of prayer.

Living Beyond Yourself
by Beth Moore

Ok, so technically this is a Bible study workbook, but y’all it is SO GOOD! I loved every week of this study on the fruit of the spirit:

But the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law. – Galations 5:22-23

I did this study with a group of girl friends and SO enjoyed every second of my at home study and our time of discussion each week. Beth Moore Bible studies are amazing, so if you’ve never done one, I highly recommend one!

Gripped by the Greatness of God
by James McDonald

This is another Bible study workbook, but again, so very good! The study focuses on the book of Isaiah and how awesome our God truly is. James McDonald points to several times in his own life where he was gripped by God’s provision, care, healing and direction and encourages the reader to seek a relationship with God above all, believe in the power of prayer, and to trust God’s sovereignty in and for all things.

If you are looking for a good read, I hope you will check out any of the books I’ve mentioned here.

Happy New Year and Happy Reading!

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