Friday, April 3, 2015

Friday Favorites - Easter edition

In honor of Good Friday, I wanted to devote this post to my family's favorite Christian books.  We don't read as much as I would like us to (or maybe as much as I would like me to), and that's something we are working to change.
1. Emma's favorites: My Easter Basket and Bedtime Prayers
Depending on her mood, we read one of these at least a few times a week at bedtime.  Emma loves to "read" the prayer book by herself.  She goes through every page and says "the shepherd shepherds!"  So cute, so simple, and oh, so true.
2. The Storybook Bible: When Emma is old enough, we will read this together as a family.  I first heard about it through Andrew Peterson's Behold the Lamb concert (which is awesome!).  I knew right away that we had to have this version of the Bible.  It's meant for children, but is a great way to bring the Message a little closer to home for adults who are tired, stressed, or who long for childhood sometimes:)

3. Brent's favorites: John Eldredge books - Wild at Heart and The Way of the Wild Heart
 In Brent's words, "it's a man's man, Christian book."  I think masculinity is important, and a lot of Christian books are either geared towards women, or don't address men in a masculine way (or support that notion). 
4. Our favorite couple's book: Brent and I read this together for part of our church small group study.  We LOVED it.  Seriously, maybe it was the pregnancy hormones, but this book made so much sense to me.  I encourage any couple to read it, even couples who are not married yet. 

5. Donald Miller books: I confess that I read these books almost 6 years ago, but they had a profound impact on my spiritual life and the events in my own life at the time.  Whenever anyone asks for a book recommendation, I always say one of these.  I suppose I should re-read them now just to make sure I feel the same:)  The author ponders what modern day Christianity is, and how it fits with modern culture.  He raises some really good issues with controversial topics, such as homosexuality.  It really made me think about what I believed and why.
I will end by saying this one is not on my list today. 
I tried. 
 I really did. 
 I couldn't get past the first 3 chapters though.
  I loved the premise of the book, and worried that maybe something was wrong with me because I was having such a hard time reading it.  But then I went and did some more research and reading of reviews.  And while there were thousands of great reviews for her book, there were hundreds of readers who echoed the same things I had thought while reading it....

"But, this was a difficult book for me to read. Voskamp is obviously a poet at heart but the entire book is sing-songy with long descriptions and awkward word phrases and metaphors that I found distracting. It doesn't read as someone would actually talk in real life conversation.....Those who like this kind of poetic narrative with mystical undertones will enjoy this book. Those who don't will likely struggle to find the message in the sea of words. For me, it was just too much page after page, and it took me a while to finish the book because I had to take it in small doses."
After talking with a friend who had also tried to read it, I decided to let it go for now, and start something else. I'm one chapter in on this one...and really loving it so far...
Happy Easter, all!

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