I have always been a reader. I loved to read a good book of fiction that would draw me in and transport me on an adventure, try to solve a mystery, visit a past period in time…. The list goes on. But, I have never been a big non-fiction reader: faith-based self help, history, biographies….never had a draw for me. However, lately things have changed.
I have a pile of books I am rotating on a daily basis and many electronic books sitting in my Kindle App library waiting to be read – and none are fiction. They all have to do with growing my spiritual walk, being inspired by someone else’s faith journey, or leading me to a more abundant life in Christ. Basically, it’s about God and my life with Him, not just my desire to be entertained with a “good read”. Does that make sense? I am not saying reading the other is bad. Not at all… unless those books are leading you down a path of lust, desire, and self fulfillment without God. Then, I would say you may want to reconsider what you are allowing to consume your mind and thoughts.
Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you. James 1:21
I am finding I want other things to consume my mind and thoughts. So, what am I reading? I have four books I am currently rotating. I guess I could just sit down and read one to completion then move on to the next. That is what I would usually do. However, right now all four are important to me and, depending on the day, I desire one over the other. Here is my list…
The Healing Path – How the Hurts in Your Past Can Lead You to a More Abundant Life by Dan B. Allender, Ph.D
Lies Women Believe and The Truth That Sets Them Free by Nancy Leigh DeMoss
Nehemiah – a Heart That Can Break by Kelly Minter
I find God is drawing my heart to books that will draw me closer to His heart and I like it. I am at an uncomfortable place in my life…. I don’t think I am happy continuing my walk with God in the way I have been doing it. Because, honestly, I haven’t done much with my walk for Him. Oh I go to church, I attend bible studies, I even led the bible studies in the past. There was serving as a MOPs officer, singing and c0-leading the worship team…… lots of acts of service. I know these things were important and helped me grow in my faith and walk. But, through it all, I am not sure my heart changes were so dramatic that I can say I really KNOW God more intimately because of them. I want the more intimate walk. I need it.
I am 43 years old, I became a christian at the age of 7, and have tried to live a life worthy of being called a christian. But, I have failed and sin, as we all do. I have repented and sought reconciliation with God, at times throughout my adult life. I love God and know He is faithful. Living a life without His hand on me is unimaginable. But, I do know it’s not enough. I want more. So, I pray, read, and seek my God and am asking Him to show himself in a more intimate way. I want to do as He leads and be willing to obey what He asks of me…. whatever that may be. And that is kind of uncomfortable to me. Actually – scary. What will He ask of me? What will I have to give up? How will it affect me and my family? Questions, questions, questions. But really there is only one answer… God. Jesus. The Holy Spirit. Okay, that was three answers. But they are all One and whatever God asks of me, He will empower me to do. And more importantly, I know there will be a blessing at the end and throughout my obedience. I don’t mean a monetary or physical blessing…. but a blessing to my heart. That I know for sure.
And so… I read. I read to seek answers how to heal from past pain (The Healing Path). I read to reveal the lies I have believed about myself and God, learning what His truths mean for me (Lies Women Believe). I read to see how other pilgrims on this path have said YES to God and the results of their obedience(Rhinestone Jesus). And finally but most important, I study his word with the help of study guides (Nehemiah…) to examine what the Bible – His word- has to say about my situation, my life, His path for me, and the journey He is calling me toward.
I continue to attend church (LifePoint) and hear powerful, anointed sermons each week. I participate in a weekly bible study. I also meet with a discipleship group where we are holding each other accountable, praying for one another, and encouraging each other as we study God’s truth. My husband and I pray together and talk about how God is moving in our home, our marriage, and in our personal walk. I do these things because each helps me focus more fully on Him as I grow in a more intimate relationship with the One who created me and loves me more than I can imagine.
What about you? Is there a particular book that strengthened your faith and or grew your walk? I would love to hear from you.