I have nearly 200 books on my to-read-list on Goodreads - and honestly, every time I look at it, I have this overwhelming wave of anxiety and depression that I will never make it through them all before I die. Of course, this is probably because I keep adding to the list, much faster than I am able to take books off the list because I finished them.
I get distracted so easily in my reading. I have books on that list that have sat on my shelf for a year. I buy it in a surge of good intentions and excitement, then get distracted by the next-best-thing. So one of my goals for 2014 is to be focused and intentional in my reading.
One book that really helped me focus my reading was Lit! A Christian Guide to Reading Books by Tony Reinke, which was also on my top ten list last week. Reinke guides the reader through making a list of reading priorities that you pick out books among the millions floating around out there.
I sat down and looked at my to-read-list and my reading priorities, and I thought, If I could only read ten books this year, and no more, which ones would I pick? I revised it a few times, and this is what I came up with. Some of these books have been on my list forever; some are new. But I'm finally going to make it happen and get those books read!
I'm hoping to read at least 24 books this year. That's a lot less than the 40 books I read last year, but I'm anticipating reading more challenging books and having a lot less time as a new mom in 2014. That also means I can read one book a month off my must-read-list, and read whatever else grabs my attention the rest of the month.
1. To know Jesus - Scripture, theology, devotionals
- Salvation Belongs to the Lord: An Introduction to Systematic Theology by John M. Frame - an exploration of major biblical truths and how they apply to the believer's life
- Idols of the Heart: Learning to Long for God Alone by Elyse Fitzpatrick - reveals what we treasure more than God and how to rid our hearts of the idols that keep us from him
- Instruments in the Redeemer's Hands: People in Need of Change Helping People in Need of Change by Paul David Tripp - a guide to biblical lay-counseling and how God can use believers to bring life change.
- Walking with the Poor: Principles and Practices of Transformational Development by Bryant L. Myers - how Christians can bring the best practices of community development and spiritual transformation to the communities they work in
- Glimpses of Grace: Treasuring the Gospel in Your Home by Gloria Furman - written by a cross-cultural worker and blogger living in Dubai about seeing God's grace in every aspect of life
- The Meaning of Marriage: Facing the Complexities of Commitment with the Wisdom of God by Timothy Keller - a look into what makes a successful marriage and how that is defined by the Bible
- Shepherding a Child's Heart by Tedd Tripp - how to reach a child's heart, not just modify their behavior; only $1.99 on Kindle right now!
- A Severe Mercy: A Story of Faith, Tragedy, and Triumph by Sheldon Vanauken - A true story of love found and lost, and faith discovered
- Wise Blood by Flannery O'Connor - I can only handle one O'Connor novel a year, and this is already on my Kindle.
- The Aviator's Wife by Melanie Benjamin - fictionalized biography about Anne Morrow, Charles Lindbergh's wife
That's it! Hopefully putting this list up on Journey Mercies will keep me accountable to reading the books I know I need to, and I'm sure you'll be seeing my thoughts on these books as I make my way through them.
So how about you? If you had to pick only one book to read in 2014, what would it be? (No, you can't say the Bible, you Sunday-school-superstars...)
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