Although I don’t get to do it as much as I want these days, on of my favorite things to do in life is read. Whether its literary classics like “The Great Cookie Thief” when I was a baby, or books on Church Ministry today, books have always had a huge impact upon my life. Because of that I wanted to share a few that the Lord has helped shape my thinking and development as a Christian. They aren’t all focused on ministry but each has equipped me to take steps towards Missions work in Melbourne.
1. The Hardy Boy Mysteries by Franklin W. Dixon-I have a deep love for these books because they were the first “big boy books” I ever read after graduating from Paddington Bear. While all the mysteries are good I prefer the old blue hardback ones and fondly remember the Christmas my brother and I were given twenty of them for Christmas when a friend outgrew them….best Christmas ever!
2. Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis-My next step after the Hardy Boys which introduced me to the world of fantasy, and the first actual series of books I read (Hardy Boys don’t have a common thread). To this day I love reading what I refer to as “epic fiction books” (Lord of the Rings, They Eye of the World, ext) that passion wouldn’t be there without Narnia.
3. When People are Big and God is Small by Dr. Ed Welch-I’m writing a series of posts on Fridays about the subject of “approval addiction” and how our desire for others love can control our lives. As a recovering approval addict I thank God for this book since it revealed my personal struggles didn’t come from low self-esteem, but finding my identity apart from Christ.
4. Instruments in the Redeemers Hands by Paul David Tripp-Amazing book on how we as Christians can help others deal with the challenges they face in life. I adore this book because it goes deeper than the initial problem and focuses on how the individual is worshipping something other than God. It has been extremely helpful while ministering to others in volunteering ministries because I’m able to show how the solution to their need is a relationship with the Lord.
5. 31 Days to Blogging Mojo by Bryan Allain-This book more than any other helped me with the creation of http://www.australianmissionary.com and deciding exactly what the Lord wanted me to do with this blog. The fact that it’s filled with humor also made me enjoy the book.
6. The Anxious Christian by Rhett Butler-Love the authenticity that the author has about his struggles with anxiety and tying his own personal testimony into the book. A must have for anyone who struggles with fear or anxiety in life.
7. Quitter by John Acuff-used by God to completely change my opinion about the furlough process, and embracing it as an opportunity to practice for future ministry in Australia instead of getting angry or frustrated about the delayed Visa application.
8. Principle of the Path by Andy Stanley-Completely changed my decision making process during the second term of service on the Mission field…especially useful as the American dollar dropping resulted in the loss of support.
There are a lot more books to share but I guess thats enough for now. As the new year approaches I want to add new books to my reading list so please let me know what books the Lord has used to shape you using Social Media, or the comments section below.