What's On My Shelf (April 2021)
"The mere brute pleasure of reading-the sort of pleasure a cow must have in grazing." - G.K. Chesterton
Watching cows graze in the pasture may seem a tad dull or monotonous. But, I think as they hang around munching, they are feeling content and satisfied in their endeavour, which isn't all that far from the joys of reading.
Here's my book roundup to end a long winter. I hope you find something you enjoy!
Hebrews For You by Micheal Kruger
This is an excellent commentary series for the believer sitting in the pews, who want to learn and better understand a book of the Bible. I've found Hebrews difficult to navigate at times with all the Old Testament references, but this book has helped break it down to see the point, that Jesus is better. Read my long review here! 5 stars!
Ragged: Spiritual Disciplines for the Spiritually Exhausted by Gretchen Ronnevik
"Your worthiness cannot help you, your unworthiness cannot hinder you"
When I picked up this book, I didn't think of myself as 'spiritually exhausted,' but I came to recognize how even the spiritual disciplines can become "works" that I come to rely on, when faith is really all about remembering His work. She helps us peel back the layers, and baggage we carry, regarding the who, what, where, when, why and how of our relationship with the Lord, and encourages us toward a life carrying a lighter yoke, resting in his provision and his grace. 4 stars!!
The Well-Watered Woman: Rooted in Truth, Growing in Grace, Flourishing in Faith by Gretchen Saffles
"The goal of the Well-Watered Woman isn't to be someone but to know someone - the one who changes everything."
This is a book you could probably go back to again and again. Gretchen shares with vulnerability, pieces of her life's journey, to help point us toward the the Gardener, and what it means to know him, and be filled by him. She encourages us toward a life that flourishes and thrives by rooting ourselves in truth. It's for the everyday woman who needs the reminder that, "life won't ever be easy, but God is always good."
Find her on Instagram for encouragement, and the website for bible studies, journals and more. I really enjoyed this, and give it 5 stars!
The Apostle's Creed: Discovering Authentic Christianity in an Age of Counterfeits by Albert Mohler
Not growing up in a liturgical Christian culture, the first time I was exposed to the Apostle's Creed was in the African church, when we went to moved overseas to serve as church planters; it's words were one of my first language lessons. In this book, the author teaches us the importance and value of the creed, that "all Christians believe more than is contained in the Apostles' Creed, but none can believe less." The powerful words it contains, serve as a guide for us in an ever increasing secular world, to point us toward biblical truths and weed out the lies. This is an important, 5 star read, for the all believers, to help understand the basic truths we believe.
The New Creation and the Storyline of Scripture by Frank Thielman
Part of the 'Short Studies in Biblical Theology' series, this book traces the theme of the new creation throughout scripture, to teach us the storyline of the Bible. I've really enjoyed this series, but this one lacked some of the relatable writing that I've appreciated in some of the others. It's an important theme and really important for us as believers to learn how to interpret biblical passages based on the whole story of scripture. 3 stars, and you can find my full review here.
Questions Women Asked: Historical Issues, Timeless Answers by Simonetta Carr
Do you feel small in a big world? Are there big questions you hold but feel like you’re the only one? Throughout history there have been women asking the same questions we do, about motherhood, life, justice and faith. @carrsimonetta introduces us to 31 women in history each a short biography, highlighting a question they had, and how they sought the answer. These women faced deep challenges and looked to the Word, and the wisdom of others to guide their hope and their actions. This is a 5 star read! One of the highlights in this book are the ‘Food for thought’ questions at the end of each biography, which would be excellent to use in a small group setting. Beware, these are not fluffy question, they get to the heart of justice, theology and faith, helping us to wrestle in community. Find my full review on the blog here.
Extraordinary Hospitality (For Ordinary People): Seven Ways to Welcome Like Jesus By Carolyn Lacey
After a year in varying forms of lockdown, we've not had the opportunity to do much hosting. We've become increasingly isolated, not of our own choice, but it's helped us to see all that we are missing the blessing of a shared meal, the joy of mutual encouragement, and learning to interact with thoughts and ideas of other perspectives.
She teaches us to delight first in God's welcome of us, then to extend that welcome to others. It doesn't have to be complicated, overwhelming or overbearing, but it does extend kindness, compassion and service to others. If you find hospitality daunting and overwhelming, or if you need some encouragement, this is an excellent read! 5 stars! And...find my full review here!
The Silver Shadow by Liz Tolsma
This True Crimes series has been really enjoyable! I like that it's based on true stories, which take you on a unique, and sometimes eerie, journey. The Silver Shadow is a man out on the streets of Denver, knocking out women who are walking home alone at night, and some have been killed. Police detective Edwin Timmer and his partner are searching for him somewhat aimlessly. Up and coming newspaper reporter Polly Blythe wants to get the inside scoop, to gain her acceptance in the reporting world, but gets too close for comfort, soon becoming the intended target of the Shadow. As they begin working together to capture the elusive assailant, time runs out, and so do the leads. *Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the ARC, and the opportunity to post an honest review
Unknown Threat by Lynn Blackburn
A Secret Service team, grieving the loss of one of their own, becomes the new target. When the FBI gets the lead on the investigation, tensions rise.
Secret service agent Luke Powell doesn't trust the FBI, nor does he want to. After losing his friends he's compelled to bring them to justice. The lead agent, Faith Malone, strives to be professional, and thorough despite the animosity. Each of them carries a past that's fighting against them. When the team gets attacked again, it means working together to discover the perpetrator before any more lives are lost.
I enjoyed this action packed story, and am looking forward to the rest of the books in the series!*Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the ARC, and the opportunity to post an honest review
Bridge of Gold by Kimberley Woodhouse
Underwater excavation, sunken treasure, and sabotage; the mystery unfolds in this dual timeline story. A long lost ship sank along the shores of San Francisco during the Gold Rush is discovered while the foundation of the south tower of the Golden Gate bridge is being established in the 1930s. But someone claims the ship is theirs. What will Luke do when the lives of those around him are at stake, including his fiancé?
When repairs need to be done on the bridge, that same ship is discovered once again, bringing an underwater archeologist, Kayla, onto the diving team. Carrying heavy grief from the recent loss of her parents, and desperately seeking answers. Can she let go of what she can't control and trust Steven in the middle of mysterious events.
History and mystery entwined in this series! If you're a fan of historical fiction, this one is for you! *Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the ARC, and the opportunity to post an honest review
**If you're interested in more books and reading, find me on Goodreads here!