Five Favorite Reads of 2017

I absolutely love to read, and if you’re reading this I’m assuming you do to (or at least want to try and love it). During 2017 I had more free time than usual, so I filled a lot of that time with books. I want to share with you my top 5 favorite books that I read in 2017 and would recommend you add to your 2018 reading list!

Love Lives Here, by Maria Goff

Maria Goff (Sweet Maria, as some of you who have read “Love Does” may know her by) is a wonderful story-teller who pulls out inspiring life lessons from everyday events of her life. This book made me want to learn to live life more freely and love those around me more deeply. It’s a book that made me smile and laugh and at the same time made me look at my own life situations with a different perspective. I will definitely be reading this one again in 2018.

“What’s your big dream? What’s your beautiful ambition? Stop waiting. Put the lists away. Take it out of the spin cicle. Will it work? Who knows. We won’t know how the race will turn out until we finish it, not before.” -Maria Goff, Love Lives Here

Love Lives Here: Finding What You Need in a World Telling You What You Want

The Circle Maker, by Mark Batterson

This one was a life changer for me. I read it twice within about 2 months and still open it up and reread different parts of it from time to time. In The Circle Maker, Mark Batterson inspires you to go deeper into your prayer life, drawing circles around your dreams and fears and reminding us that nothing is impossible for God. It will make you want to pray bold prays and drop to your knees far more often to talk to God. The stories he tells are nothing short of inspiring and will remind you how truly big our God is.

“Bold prayers honor God, and God honors bold prayers. God isn’t offended by your biggest dreams or boldest prayers. He is offended by anything less. If your prayers aren’t impossible to you, they are insulting to God.” – Mark Batterson, The Circle Maker

The Circle Maker: Praying Circles Around Your Biggest Dreams and Greatest Fears

Love Story, by Nichole Nordeman

I saw this book at a store and picked it up on a whim, and I’m so glad I did. Nichole Nordeman has written a book different than any I have read before. As she goes through the stories we know well from the Bible, she takes a look at familiar people of scripture and gives you a whole new perspective on them. From Adam and Eve to Moses, Joshua, the Theif, Jesus, Paul and many more, she helps you see their stories and lives in a completely different way, and then conects them to her life and struggles that so many of us can relate to!

“In all of these moments, the Creator held us like new borns and saw glimpses of himself. And though it is our capacity for utter darkness and destruction that leaves me wondering why he bothered, is is our capacity to reflect the perfection of his light and love that reveal why he did. -Nichole Nordeman, Love Story

Love Story: The Hand That Holds Us from the Garden to the Gates

Cold Tangerines, by Shauna Niequist

Oh, this lovely book. If you appreciate finely crafted and inspiring sentences, you will love this book. This is a collection of short stories from Shauna’s life. She tells stories about her life, where she sees the hand of God, and the joy of everyday life with God. She had me laughing many times, but other times brought tears to my eyes. This book truely made me want to appreciate every single day, it made me want to slow down and look around, not being so quick to move onto the next thing.

“I choose to belive that there is nothing more sacred or profound than this day. I choose to believe that there may be a thousand big moments embedded in this day, waiting to be discovered like tiny shards of gold. The big moments are the daily, tiny moments of courage and forgiveness and hope that we grab on to and extend to one another.” – Shauna Niequist, Cold Tangerines

Cold Tangerines: Celebrating the Extraordinary Nature of Everyday Life

Dangerous, by Caleb Bislow

If I’m being honest, I actaully read this for the first time about 4 years ago. However, it’s one of my favorites and I reread it in 2017 and will probably read it again in 2018 as well. It will inspire you to quit playing it safe and find your confidence. It will push you to be brave and bold women and men of Christ. By the end of this book you will want to love people well and without boundries or conditions. It will challenge you to trust God in dangerous situations and remind you that being a Follower of Christ is anything but boring. I will also say that I have spent a few weeks with Caleb and his family and they truely live out their faith, they are wonderful people with a fiery passion for God and to reach those far from Christ.

“Many have compassion for the unreached and unfortunate, but compassion without action is just a wasted reaction.”- Caleb Bislow, Dangerous

Dangerous: Engaging the People and Places No One Else Will

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