Search No Faint Hearts


Sunday, July 01, 2012

10 Books That Changed My Faith

I'm linking up with Sarah Bessey this week {or tonight, anyway} and her 10 books series. Why don't you play along, too? This will be fun!

So, 10 books that changed my faith...

Shadow of the Almighty by Elisabeth Elliot

Jason gave me this to read not long before we got married, and I was just blown away. It was the first time I had encountered the concept of accepting Christ as more than just my Savior, but as the Lord of my life--completely surrendering to His way of life and letting Him be in charge. It's something I'm still working on, but this book started the process. Game changer.

Practicing the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence
Right on the heels of reading about the Elliots, this was another book that got me thinking about not compartmentalizing God into Sunday mornings. So much of my life, up to that point, reflected a sacred-secular divide, and I started to see how God's presence needed to be flowing through every aspect of my life.

The O'Malley Chronicles by Dee Henderson
OK, so there are six books here {seven if you count the prequel}, but these books, although fiction, helped me see what the principles I read about in Brother Lawrence looked like in practice. Ordinary people living out their faith in kind of extraordinary ways. Plus, they were the first Christian fiction books I had read that I actually enjoyed {sad, but true}.

Going Public With Your Faith by William Carr Peel and Walt Larimore
Before there was Introverts in the Church {which is still on my to-be-read list}, there was this book. Finally a way to "do evangelism" {using that term loosely} that didn't feel really, really awkward, weird, and unfruitful. 

Girl Meets God by Lauren Winner
I can't come up with a concrete way that this book changed my faith, but I just loved it. It was so beautifully written, and I felt like she and I would be friends in real life. :)

Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life by Donald Whitney
This was a book Jason had to read for a class. It's another one of those that helped me see how to put abstract ideas into practice. It was a good one for those of us who are happiest when given a to-do list.

Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis
Really, I could put everything by C.S. Lewis here, but Mere Christianity was probably the most helpful in re-solidifying what I believed and why. 

Velvet Elvis by Rob Bell
Then Rob Bell came along and showed me it was OK to question what I believed and why. This book brought up a lot of gray areas but reinforced {for me, anyway} that God was big enough to handle those areas as well as any question I might have for Him. It also helped me realize that faith is not black and white; things are just not that simple. And that's OK.

Recovering Biblical Manhood and Womanhood by John Piper and Wayne Grudem
This is the only one on the list that I didn't like. :) But it did change my faith. After we got married, Jason and I started questioning and working through some aspects of the whole male head-of-the-house concept. This book is pretty much the complementarian bible, so I started here with investigating that perspective. And the arguments the authors put forth in this book were not at all convincing to me. In fact, I found them so unconvincing that they pushed me in the complete opposite direction. {Enter the breath of fresh air that is Rachel Held Evans, whose book is actually still on my to-be-read list as well.}

Making Room for Life and The Connecting Church by Randy Frazee
Jason read these for class as well {I'm forever "borrowing" his reading material}, and the concepts in here just made so much sense to us. Creating relationships, simplifying life, how to "do church" just all clicked for us. We would probably use these as our handbooks if we were ever to do a church plant, which we're not. Probably. ;)


  1. Ha! I did a double-take at your Grudem book but then read a bit more and oh, now I understand! Well played. ;-) I loved Practising the Presence of God so much, too. Thanks!

    1. Glad you read on! :) Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Thanks for sharing this list. I will be forever grateful for you introducing me to Rachel Held Evans and her blog. I'm a huge Lauren Winner fan myself. Have you read any of her other works?

    1. Hooray! I love RHE too. :) I read Lauren Winner's awkwardly titled book (ha), but the two after that are still on my to-be-read list.


I'll respond to comments within 24 hours, so check the post again for follow-ups!

Read from the beginning...