We asked our friends at The United Methodist Publishing House and Abingdon Press to recommend some great reads that would feed our faith this year. They told us about 10 wonderful books they feel you will enjoy.
A Fragile Hope by Cynthia Ruchti – Josiah Chamberlain’s work revolves around repairing other people's marriages. When his own is threatened by his wife's unexplained distance, and then threatened further when she's unexpectedly plunged into an unending fog, Josiah finds his expertise, quick wit and clever quips are no match for a relationship that is clearly broken.
Follow Chamberlain as he reexamines everything he knows about the fragility of hope and the strength of his faith and love. Will what’s left of his faith fail him? Or will it be the one thing that holds him and his marriage together?
Pond River Ocean Rain: Find Peace in the Storms of Life by Charles Lattimore Howard – Wade into the beautiful water that is God through stories, questions, and accessible illustrations. Feel the Living Water wash over you while contemplating stillness (such as a pond), trust in God’s will (like the rush of a river), peace within mystery (as experienced in the depths of the ocean), and the movement of God’s relentless love for us (the refreshing rain we receive).
Pond River Ocean Rain is simple, occasionally wild, consistently beautiful, and reveals abundant life for all who jump in.
Dwelling Places: Words to Live in Every Season by Lucinda Secrest McDowell – What if a thriving, active faith were as simple as reading one word a day? If you're tired of busyness and noise, perhaps one word a day can change your life.
Through short and inspiring readings, single words like mercy, beauty, gratitude, or grace, reveal a biblical blessing or challenge. Full of stories and illustrations to empower you to live the word you have just read, each devotional ends with a benediction, written as if God were speaking directly to you.
Pray Like Jesus: Rediscovering the Lord’s Prayer by Don Underwood – The Lord’s Prayer is the most famous prayer in the world and is remarkably simple and brief. In only 70 words, Jesus covers the breadth of the Christian message and experience. Most Christians know it by heart and can easily recite it.
In Pray Like Jesus, United Methodist pastor the Rev. Don Underwood reexamines the familiar words of the Lord’s Prayer and discovers insightful spiritual guidance for developing a rich devotional life. At the end of each chapter, he suggest ideas for making the prayer part of our daily spiritual disciplines.
Moses: In the Footsteps of the Reluctant Prophet by Adam Hamilton – Retrace the life of Moses from his modest birth and rescue as a baby to the courts of Pharaoh, from herding flocks in Midian to leading his people out of Egypt.
Join United Methodist pastor the Rev. Adam Hamilton as he travels to explore the sites of Moses' life. Using historical information, archaeological data, and the biblical text, Hamilton guides us in the footsteps of this reluctant prophet who grew in his relationship with God throughout his life. A companion Bible study is also available.
Shalom for the Heart: Torah-Inspired Devotions for a Sacred Life by Rabbi Evan Moffic – What can Christians learn from engaging Torah Scripture the way Jesus did?
Popular author and speaker Rabbi Evan Moffic reveals the wisdom of the Torah for today’s Christians. Beautifully written weekly devotions encourage readers throughout the year. Christian readers are invited to engage in a study pattern of the Jewish founders of the faith, to grow deeper in relationship with Jesus, and find meaning, comfort, and direction for our lives.
Stepping on Cheerios: Finding God in the Chaos and Clutter of Life by Betsy Singleton Snyder – Being a mom isn’t easy. Sometimes it’s hard to experience a personal connection with God and community when you are caught up in the chaos.
This collection of funny, warm, and charming tales from the frontlines of parenthood, addresses the everyday feats of work, motherhood, marriage, church, and more. It’s a comical story of a United Methodist pastor’s realization that her crazy life is a gift, and how she found the grace in it.
Hear the Rev. Betsy Singleton Snyder talk about her book on an episode of Get Your Spirit in Shape.
Motherprayer: Lessons in Loving by Barbara Mahany – As mothers, prayer is at its glorious best when we soar beyond words; it’s how we breathe; it’s motherlove.
This collection of personal love letters on the mysteries and gifts of mothering, interspersed with family recipes and gentle essays, offers beautiful lessons in how to love well. In her bracingly honest style, Mahany captures the ephemeral moments of motherhood—the hard, the glorious, the laughter, and the tears—and invites readers to pay attention, cradle our loved ones in prayer, and see the sacred lessons in loving.
40 Days with Wesley: A Daily Devotional Journey by Rueben P. Job – In an accessible, inviting format, this forty-day devotional weaves inspirational readings on faith and prayer from United Methodist Bishop Rueben P. Job, with quotes and excerpts from John Wesley, founder of the Methodist movement. Each selection offers a prayer, scripture, a short reading, quotes from John Wesley, and a blessing to take with you through the day. Those familiar with or new to the writings of Wesley will find reassurance and inspiration.
Bible Sisters: A Year of Devotions with the Women of the Bible by Gennifer Benjamin Brooks – 365 days of Bible devotions on the named and unnamed women of the Bible, from Eve to the women at the empty tomb and in the early church. The daily Bible passages, reflections, and prayers selected and written by United Methodist professor and pastor the Rev. Gennifer Benjamin Brooks are perfect for personal devotions to explore women's perspectives in the Bible.
All images courtesy The United Methodist Publishing House and Abingdon Press.