Not everything lesson needs to be told in parables or allegories in order for them to shape us as Christ followers. There’s no argument Christian nonfiction has a ton to offer intellectually and spiritually as well.
Today, I’m going to share with you 5 Christian nonfiction books I’ve recently added to my ever-lengthening “to-be-read” list.
Gloss over them, and let me know in the comments which ones you’re going to add to your TBR. Have you read any already? I’d love to hear your thoughts!
1. Second Mile People by Isobel Kuhn
I heard about this short yet profound Christian nonfiction by Isobel Kuhn about a year and a half ago. My pastor referenced and suggested it in one of his sermons, and from the way he’d lauded it, I haven’t been able to forget it since. The title, as he’d explained, was influenced by Matthew 5:41, “If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles.” The book recounts six colleagues and friends from Kuhn’s time as a missionary whom she’d witnessed faithfully living out this command and ultimately the life of a Christian.
Going through the reviews on Goodreads, I have my fingers crossed that this is one of those Christian books that leaves you with more than a few useful spiritual lessons but rather leaves you feeling as though you’ve walked through another’s life. You find a copy of the book here.
2. My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers
This is not your average daily devotional book. Nope, it’s an intense, empowering, burns-in-the-back-of-your-head (but in a powerful and edifying way) devotional compiled from the teachings of one of the most passionate preachers of his day. From what I’ve read from other people’s reviews, it does take far more than an nonchalant skim to really glean the invaluable lessons enfolded between the pages. But those who do invest the time and energy to digging in deep have found the growth they receive as disciples of Christ totally and immeasurably worth it.
I’d first stumbled across Oswald Chambers from a sermon I’d heard from another pastor. He’d specifically cited this one of Chamber’s quotes, “When we preach the love of God, there is a danger of forgetting that the Bible reveals not first the love of God but the intense, blazing holiness of God, with His love at the center of that holiness.” You don’t hear many preachers speaking with such unabashed boldness nowadays, do you? At least I don’t, which is why I’m so eager to crack open this devotional. You can grab a copy of it too here.
3. After You Believe: Why Christian Character Matters by N.T. Wright
This one was also recommended by a friend. We’d met at a small gathering back in February, where he stole the spotlight the moment he began effusing his knowledge on Christian theology. During the group conversation, we’d somehow wounded downstream to the topic of N.T Wright and eventually to his book After You Believe. Obviously, the author and his book has been on my mind since.
This three hundred page tome walks the reader through what it means to live as a Christian. In it, Wright dispels the common misconception that Christian living involves at most a stringent checklist of “must-do’s” and instead emphasizes the radical transformative power of scripture in our lives. The closing of the synopsis states, “We are all spiritual seekers, intuitively knowing there is more to life than we suspect. This is a book for anyone who is hoping there is something more while we’re here on Earth.” Whether you are still searching for a purpose in life, curious about fruitful Christian living, or want a demystification of Wright, this book seems like a promising place to start. Grab a copy here.
4. The Storm-Tossed Family: How the Cross Reshapes the Home by Russell D. Moore
I may have forgotten where I’d found the recommendation for this Christian nonfiction but I certainly haven’t forgotten the reviews I’ve come across. Over and over again people have praised Moore’s scripture-grounded dissection of family and its far-reaching influence as a much needed reminder that no matter how overwhelming family may be at times, “family—every family—is an echo of the gospel”.
Family can feel more like a tragic burden rather than a blessing many times throughout our lives. I have certainly succumbed to this attitude before. Perhaps you have too. That’s why I was immediately enticed by the title. “Storm-tossed” implies a family undergoing a crisis or at least some degree of suffering, and “the Cross Reshapes” points to the saving power of Christ, even for something as broken and supposedly irreparable as house full of sinners. If the title alone can present such a touching message, I can’t wait to see what the rest of the book holds. You can find The Storm-Tossed Family here.
5. Lit!: A Christian Guide to Reading Books by Tony Reinke
Last but not least, I’m choosing to include this book in honor of the macythoughts’ niche in Christian book blogging. I cannot emphasize enough just how relieved, happy, and thankful that after months of winding down dead-end avenues, I’ve finally arrived at a vision for this blog that I truly believe in and want to achieve. Praise the Lord!
Reinke’s book answers how our identity in Christ should shape our literary tastes and our mindset when traversing through material that may challenge the Christian worldview. In it, he offers practical guidance to develop “the most urgent skills you need to enjoy a luminously literate life in honor of God”. As a Christian blogger, reader, and writer, I don’t think I can find another Christian nonfiction that speaks more strongly to my recreational needs than this one. You can grab a copy here.
So what do the rest of you guys think? What other great reads would you recommend to this list? Are there any on here you’re curious about yourself? Drop a comment to continue the discourse.
P.S. Don’t have time for a full-length book but still want to satisfy your literary cravings? I have just the thing for you. Check out these 5 thought-provoking short stories you can read in one sitting.
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Hey there, it’s Macy! If you’re new to macythoughts, I encourage you to check out my About page to learn more about who I am and what macythoughts is all about. Also feel free to connect with me via social media. I love meeting people and would always cherish a new friend.