How many of you are as sick and tired as I am of hearing all the hype about books like Fifty Shades of Grey or Thirty Pieces of Silver (which they won’t even print in hardcopy), or Plain Jane?
These books are not what you can call good for the soul. Just the opposite, in fact. These and so many others are dark, sinister, and discouraging. When I think of books such as these I think of the words in Hebrews 12:1-2:
Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Thankfully there are countless books out there for us book-lovers that are appropriate, entertaining, encouraging, and even those that challenge us to be better. I want to share with you a few of my favorites in an effort to steer you toward books that will allow you to live the Word of God in Philippians 4:8:
Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.
All books in this list are available in print and digital formats.
1. The Hiding Place
Words I would use to describe this book are: heart-wrenching, gutsy, relevant, inspiring, courageous, Christ-like, and one that challenges us out of our comfort zone. You don’t know what problems and hard times are until you read this book.
2. The Greatest Salesman in the World
The Greatest Salesman in the World by Og Mandion is what I call a tiny-sized treasure with enormous value. The book is a parable of sorts set in the Middle East in the time just before Jesus’ birth.
The main character, Hafid, takes a journey (literally and figuratively) that results in him discovering that being and believing in yourself and what you are doing is the key to true success. Hafid’s journey is our journey too. That’s what makes this book a must-read for everyone.
3. A Second Chance
A Second Chance is a first for new author, Dana K. Ray. This Christian romance/young adult fiction is a modern-day story of forgiveness, getting beyond your past, having hope for the future, and seeing yourself the way God sees you.
I think what sets this book apart from others in this genre is the fact that it isn’t sugar-coated and all tied up in a nice, neat package.
4. All In and 5. The Circle Maker
All In and The Circle Maker, both by Mark Batterson, are excellent books that challenge you to trust your life and your heart to God and the workings of the Holy Spirit.
In All In Batterson reminds and challenges us to be just that—all in for Jesus Christ. He reminds us that Jesus gave his all for us, so the least we can do is give our all back to him.
The Circle Maker takes its focus from the legend of Honi—a Jewish man who, in first century BC, drew a circle in the sand and told God he wasn’t moving until God sent a downpour of rain.
Batterson uses Honi’s prayer life to remind us that there is so much more to prayer and God’s vision for us than we allow him to show us.
Both are powerful books you will be glad you read.
6. In Between
In Between by Jenny B. Jones, is a great Christian fiction book that brings together the young and the old, the lost and the found, and the hopeful with the hopeless.
It is a modern-day story with a message that is timeless. The message: Ultimately we are responsible for our own destiny. No one can make that choice for us, so we’d better choose wisely.
7. Three Weeks in Washington
Three Weeks in Washington: A Titus Ray Thriller by Luana Ehrlich is a Christian suspense/thriller that is action-packed and edgy. The author weaves all sorts of intrigue and factual evidence into a plot that is believable and attention-grabbing. The fact that Titus Ray is a new Christian and working hard toward learning what it means to be a Christian is another great aspect that makes this book a great read.
8. Through the Eyes of a Shepherd
Through the Eyes of a Shepherd is written by yours truly, Darla Noble. It is a quick-read inspirational non-fiction that can also be described as a devotional book.
Through the Eyes of a Shepherd is a collection of life-lessons God taught me in the twenty years I spent caring for our family’s flock of over five hundred sheep. And yes, he used the sheep to do so.
People mistakenly label sheep as dumb, stupid, and mindless creatures. But they’re not. Sheep are compliant, obedient, trusting, and creatures of habit… which is EXACTLY how God calls us to be.
I’d also like to mention that twenty percent of all book sales goes to CEF (Christ’s Evangelical Foundation), a ministry that provides a FREE Bible college education to anyone living outside the United States and all active-duty military and their spouses.
~ By Darla Noble