A few weeks ago I wrote a post dedicated to my reading goals for 2016 and included a list of all the books I was planning to read for this year. (If you’re struggling with the age old question of what should I read next, you should check that out.) Of course, we’re only one month in and I’ve already deviated from that plan. But, I’ve decided to be okay with that. I need a little spontaneity in my life.
My reads this month were lovely, and had a common thread of facing our own shame and the challenges of this life, and the grace God wants to give us in the midst of it.
Rising Strong by Brené Brown: I cannot recommend this book enough. In fact, it’s going on my all time favorites list. I truly think her work is a must read. In this book she focuses on what it looks like to rise bravely after falling. We all have our falling moments, whether they are life altering or cause a small amount of embarrassment, they still happen to us almost daily. The goal in life should not be to avoid those moments, but instead learn how to get back up, face the moment, and move forward having changed for the better. Rising Strong requires us to walk into our stories of hurt and shame, which can feel scary and intimidating, but come out on the other side a better and stronger person.
If you haven’t read anything of hers I would probably recommend starting with Daring Greatly before reading Rising Strong. It’s not essential, but I think it will help give you a good understanding and backdrop for Rising Strong.
Girl Meets Change by Kristen Strong: The premise of this book is that we all face changes and transitions in our life, and too often we don’t handle them well. In Girl Meets Change Kristen shows women that when we follow God’s will, no matter how much change it brings our way, we find a life of contentment, purpose, and renewed strength. We WILL face change in this life and we need to be intentional about learning to face it well.
Personally, I’m going through a lot of transition right now including a job change and a possible adoption. This book helped me identify some warning signs of change handled poorly, and gave some specific guidance for navigating the rough waters with grace and wisdom. I would recommend this book for anyone wanting to honor God with your life. Change is inevitable and we should all be prepared to face it well.
Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers: If you’re a book lover and haven’t read this one, you need to get on it now. I read this for a book club, and it’s actually the second time I’ve read it. There are arguments to be made regarding the length, and the amount of detail she includes at times, but the underlying theme of this book is really beautiful. It’s based on the biblical story of Hosea and focuses on God’s unconditional, redemptive and all-consuming love for us. It’s a story of not letting go no matter the betrayal and mistrust it creates in a relationship. It’s such a great reminder of the depth of sin in our own lives and God’s continual decision to love us in spite of that.
I would love to hear your book recommendations and what you’re currently reading. It’s really one of my favorite things to talk about!