2015 Summer Readings
The Good and Beautiful God
James Bryan Smith
The path to spiritual transformation begins here. The author explains
that the most important thing about a person is what they think about
God. Turning to the Gospels, Smith invites you to put your ideas to the
test to see if they match up with what Jesus himself reveals about God.
Once you've discovered the truth in Scripture, Smith leads you through a
process of spiritual formation that includes specific activities aimed at
making these new narratives real in your body and soul as well as your
The Good and Beautiful Life
James Bryan Smith
"I have never met a person whose goal was to ruin his or her life. We all
want to be happy, and we want it all of the time."
So begins James Bryan Smith in The Good and Beautiful Life. The
problem is, he tells us, we have bought into false notions of happiness
and success. These self-centered decisions lead us further into the vices
that cause ruin: anger, lust, lying, worry and judging. Eventually we find
ourselves living a beautifully packaged life of self-destruction.
The Good and Beautiful Community
James Bryan Smith
In the pages of The Good and Beautiful Community, Jim Smith shows us
how to bring spiritual formation and community engagement together,
and then once again offers spiritual practices that root new, true
narratives about God and the world in our souls. His insight and humility
as a fellow learner with us will lead us to live in authentic ways as a
good and beautiful community of Christ-followers, shining the light of
the Spirit into every relationship.
Celebration of Discipline
Richard J. Foster
In Celebration of Discipline, Foster explores the "classic Disciplines," or
central spiritual practices, of the Christian faith to show how each of
these areas contribute to a balanced spiritual life. Foster, helps motivate
Christians everywhere to embark on a journey of prayer and spiritual
The Gift of Being Yourself
David G. Benner
Christians throughout the ages have agreed that there cannot be deep
knowledge of God without deep knowledge of the self. Discerning your
true self is inextricably related to discerning God's purposes for you.
Paradoxically, the more you become like Christ, the more you become
authentically yourself. In this profound exploration of Christian identity,
psychologist and spiritual director David G. Benner illuminates the
spirituality of self-discovery.
Invitation to a Journey
M. Robert Mulholland Jr.
In Invitation to a Journey, Mulholland helps Christians new and old to
understand that we become like Christ gradually, not instantly. Not
every personality is suited to an early morning quiet time, so Mulholland
frees different personality types to express their piety differently. This
road map for spiritual formation is profoundly biblical and down to earth.
In the finest tradition of spiritual literature, it is a vital help to Christians
at any stage of their journey.
The Cost of Discipleship
Dietrich Bonhoeffer
"When Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die." With these words,
in The Cost of Discipleship, Dietrich Bonhoeffer gave powerful voice to
the millions of Christians who believe personal sacrifice is an essential
component of faith. Bonhoeffer, a German Lutheran pastor and
theologian, was an exemplar of sacrificial faith: he opposed the Nazis
from the first and was eventually imprisoned in Buchenwald and hung by
the Gestapo in 1945.
A Long Obedience in the Same Direction
Eugene H. Patterson
As a society, we are no less obsessed with the immediate than when
Eugene Peterson first wrote this Christian classic. If anything, email and
the Internet may have intensified our quest for the quick fix. But
Peterson's time-tested prescription for discipleship remains the same--a
long obedience in the same direction.
The Divine Conspiracy
Dallas Willard
The Divine Conspiracy has revolutionized how we think about the true
meaning of discipleship. In this classic, one of the most brilliant Christian
thinkers of our times, Dallas Willard, skillfully weaves together biblical
teaching, popular culture, science, scholarship, and spiritual practice,
revealing what it means to "apprentice" ourselves to Jesus.
Mere Christianity
C. S. Lewis
In the classic Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis, the most important writer of
the 20th century, explores the common ground upon which all of those
of Christian faith stand together. Bringing together Lewis’ legendary
broadcast talks during World War II, Mere Christianity provides an
unequaled opportunity for believers and nonbelievers alike to hear this
powerful apologetic for the Christian faith.