Sabbatical Books

Prayer by Phillip Yance

My wife Lynn first clued me in to this book. She loves it. In it, Yancey probes the most fundamental, challenging, perplexing, and deeply rewarding aspect—the very heartbeat—of your relationship with God: prayer.

Walking with God by John Eldredge
Waking the Dead was one of my favorite books. This book makes it more personal. Sharing from his personal journals and experiences John Eldredge takes you with him through a year of his life, where he lives out many of the principles discussed in his earlier books.

Unchristian by David Kinnaman
I’ve mentioned this book many times in the last few months. In Unchristian, David Kinnaman, president of the Barna Group, has complied startling research among the unchurched and learned that Christians are too often known for the issues they stand against, rather than the hope which they stand for.

The Rest of God by Mark Buchanan
I actually read this already. My first sabbatical read. I highly recommend it. In The Rest of God, author Mark Buchanan talks about the Sabbath. He shares personal stories and a Biblical explanation of what Sabbath is all about. I know it’s the first one of the sabbatical, but if you can only read 2-3 books during the next 3-4 months make this one of them.

The Fifth Discipline by Peter Senge
This is one that I’ve always wanted to read. It’s good to read across the disciplines. Senge’s book draws on science, spiritual wisdom, psychology, and the cutting edge of management thought to show how businesses can overcome their “learning disabilities.”

Launching a Leadership Revolution by Chris Brady & Orrin Woodward
Sooner or later, we are all called to lead in some capacity. Leadership skills are vital in corporate settings, small businesses, church or community organizations, and even within the home. Utilizing an abundance of historical examples, the authors have developed a unique 5-step plan that charts a course for creating and maintaining strong leadership in any organization. This book comes highly recommended by Bill Hybels.

In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day by Mark Batterson
The name alone puts it in the top 5! What if the seemingly messy pieces of your life were actually strategically positioned by God? What if you’ve actually been in the right place at the right time every time? In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day will help you make sense of your past and see how God has been preparing you for future opportunities.

Rees Howell – Intercessor by Mark Grubb
This will be a re-read for me. One of the few, but it is a heart-stirring biography on prayer and faith. Rees Howells was one who learned the Bible as the Spirit made him live it. Every chapter of this biography is full of drama and light, showing how he faced the implications of complete surrender to God, learned to love the unlovely, found the key to prevailing prayer, became the channel of a mighty revival in Africa, was taught the principles of divine healing, and progressed even further in faith until world events were affected by his prayers.

Knowledge of the Holy by AW Tozer
Another re-read. This one (and also Tozer’s “The Pursuit of God) will be read before I come back. How can we recapture a real sense of God’s majesty and truly live in the Spirit. Tozer’s The Knowledge of the Holy, a modern classic of Christian testimony and devotion, addresses these and other vital questions, showing us how we can rejuvenate our prayer life, meditate more reverently, and experience God’s presence in our daily lives.

Authentic Faith by Gary Thomas
An author that I am coming to appreciate more and more; in Authentic Faith, Thomas helps sharpen your spiritual vision and fortify your commitment by examining ten disciplines God uses to forge a fire-tested faith. A good book if you find yourself going through hard times.

Your God is too Safe by Mark Buchanan
Your God is Too Safe thoughtfully explores why Christians get stuck in the place of complacency, dryness, and tedium and how to move on to new levels of spiritual passion! Citing Jonah, Buchanan examines the problem of “borderland living” where doubt, disappointment, guilt, and wonderlessness keep people in a quagmire of mediocrity. He then offers effective solutions to get unstuck and follow a bold, unpredictable, exhilarating Christ.

The Beautiful Fight by Gary Thomas
Some Christians seem like believers with no pulse. In his manifesto to a fully alive faith, Thomas reminds us that Christ’s sacrifice offers us forgiveness and transformation! We must “fight” to live differently—seeing with Christ’s eyes, feeling with his heart, serving with his hands, and demonstrating his love to others.

The Jesus Way by Eugene Peterson
A new book, from a long-time favorite author. Peterson considers the path Jesus preached compared to the road the American church has practiced. His extensive study of Old Testament characters reveals how the focus of current Christianity—consumerism, celebrity, and charisma—obliterates unique in New Testament faith.

Edge of Eternity by Randy Alcorn
This probably won’t be my only – for fun story – but it will be one. A disillusioned business executive whose life has hit a dead-end, Nick Seagrave has lost loved ones to tragedy and his family to neglect. Pitted against flying beasts, a monstrous web that threatens to hold him captive, an evil, brooding intelligence, and undeniable evidence of a spiritual world, Nick must finally consider the God he claims not to believe in.