Two Convicting Books
1. The Insanity of God by Nik Ripkin
For the first half of the book, the author shares the story of his family's time in Africa and how they end up leaving the field discouraged and with questions about why things happened the way they did. Nik's journey continues in the second half of the book as he travels around the world collecting stories from believers who have been persecuted for their faith. Their stories inspired me to look at the strength of my faith and to thank God for their faithfulness. Here are three quotes that challenged me.
"Serving God is not a matter of location, but a matter of obedience." (p.75)
"You don't have to come back. You just have to go." (p.167)
"Ruth and I have seldom encountered a mature believer living in persecution who asked us to pray that their persecution would cease. We have never heard that request. Rather, believers in persecution ask us to pray "they would be faithful and obedient through their persecution and suffering. That is a radically different prayer." (p.306)
2. Keepers of Salt by Debby Davis
In biblical times and even still in some cultures today, covenants are made by exchanging salt, eating bread together or through some type of blood ritual. Debby uses stories about covenants in the bible and her life in American and Africa to share how we as followers of Christ can do a better job of keeping covenant with God, our friends, family, and, in my case, with our team here. Here are two challenging quotes that I am hoping will help me change the way I respond to those I am in covenant with.
"Rev. Carlton Spencer often said, "It is as much a sin to be offended as it is to offend." Many times we think that the offender is the only one at fault. However, if you take offense and give it a home in your heart, water it with a good dose of bitterness and unforgiveness, you are also at fault." (location 718)
"If you only see spears, you will gladly pick them up and throw them back where they came from. Sometimes we get caught up in the fight and lose sight of the Covenant. But those with the eyes of Covenant see the person who is throwing spears. They remember their Covenant to them and to God." (location 1705)
3. David and Goliath by Malcolm Gladwell
One bonus to listening to audiobooks is that if the book is good, my house will be extra clean since I always like to work as I listen. So I can thank Malcolm for a clean house. Malcolm begins the book with the story of David and Goliath and insights into what advantages David has as the underdog. The rest of the book goes along this premise that underdogs often have some type of advantage because of tragedy or disability or due to way they respond to those in authority over them. The book is full of stories and Malcolm's take on why the underdog came out on top. As a teacher, I appreciate his insights on class size and how a teacher's classroom discipline doesn't just depend on a good plan but also on the teacher's rapor with her students.
4 and 5. Scorch Trials and The Death Cure (Maze runner series) by James Dashner
Last week our family watched the Maze Runner movie. Curious to see what happened next, I read the next two books in between helping the kids with their school. The books had lots of good twists and turns. I also appreciated how this series had less boy/girl drama then series such as Hunger Games and Divergent. The books were fun reads but would not be on the top of books I would recommend.
What are some books you have read this month that you have enjoyed and would recommend or even a book you didn't like and wouldn't recommend? For more book suggestions, follow this link to Modern Ms. Darcy and her suggestions.