My Favorite Books from 2018
“If you stop growing today, you stop teaching tomorrow.”
“The law of the teaching is ‘that I, as a teacher, am primarily a learner, a student among students.” - Howard Hendricks, Teaching to Change Lives
I reached my reading goal of 50 books in 2018 through the Goodreads Reading Challenge, and I’m going to keep my goal at 50 books in 2019, so I can ponder more thoughtfully on the books I read as well. I was challenged by this quote from Teaching to Change Lives by Howard Hendricks, “If you have an hour set apart to read, try reading for the first half hour and use the second half hour to reflect on what you read. Watch the difference it makes. You’re reading too much if you reflect on it too little.” That sums up my habits. I love reading, but I have a hard time remembering all that I read or allowing proper time to reflect, apply, and retain what I read. With journaling pencil and my commonplace journal in hand, I plan to read and reflect, or practice writing a narration about what I read.
My favorite books from my book list in 2018 include:
The Lonesome Gods by Louis L’Amour
I was really quite surprised to enjoy the world of Louis L’Amour this past year, and read two of his books. This title was recommended by Cindy Rollins and Schole Sisters, so I knew I had to read it. I finished this book with such a contented sigh. It was so good. Gripping. Mysterious. Well-written. I love the beautiful quotes on self-education and the value of reading and reading aloud. The father/son relationship was very sweet and meaningful. Can’t wait to read it again. Book club read and recommended.
“You are history,” Thomas Fraser told us. “Do not think of history as something remote that concerns only kings, queens, and generals. It concerns you. Each of you has a history. You and your families march across the pages of history, and often he who plows a furrow is of more importance than he who leads an army. The army can destroy, the furrow can feed.”
“Do not be afraid. A little fear can make one cautious. Too much fear can rob you of initiative. Respect fear, but use it for an incentive, do not let it bind you or tie you down.”
I loved Jen’s gentle but remarkably inspiring call to practice hospitality, not with glamor and perfection, but with openness and humility. Come as you are.
“When we use our lives exactly as they are, desiring only to create a sacred space for our guests, mixing it with the countercultural truth of loving Jesus and loving others, we turn entertaining upside down, and it becomes radical hospitality.”
“I have nothing to prove. He delights to work with my imperfections. If people are blessed and impacted, it’s only because He’s gracious to take a broken, weary, and unimpressive woman and use her desire for serving Him to point others to Jesus, in spite of herself.”
Devoted: Great Men and their Godly Moms by Tim Challies
This was a short easy read of mini biographies of incredible women of faith who pointed their children to Jesus through their lives. I was so challenged by their devotion to praying for their children, instructing their children in theology, and leading by example. A fabulous book for every mother to read! Especially encouraging for the mother who has a wayward child, so many beautiful testimonies of men returning to the faith through the prayers of a loving mother.
Gracelaced by Ruth Chou Simons
Gracelaced was such a beautiful devotion! Ruth is an incredible artist and writer and mother of six boys. I was inspired by her thoughtful encouragement and reminders of truth from Scripture and by her beautiful illustrations, paintings, and photos. She is a gifted lady and this book deserves a spot on your shelf! Highly recommend this devotional. I am adding it to my re-read pile for 2019.
“Today’s painful prunings pave the wave for tomorrow’s blooms.”
“We are set free from being judged according to our obedience, but are freed to obedience in love for a merciful Savior.”
“His delight in us is based on His character and not ours. That’s the good news.”
“I’m not just a generic face among the masses, but a chosen one whom God knows by name.”
Favorite Read Aloud with Kids:
By the Great Horned Spoon by Sid Fleischman
This historical fiction set in the time of the California Gold Rush had my kids and I laughing out loud. It was delightfully entertaining. We rotated between reading aloud and listening to the audiobook version. The audiobook was well done!
Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis
The audiobook version of this title won the day as well! Once again, we enjoyed many laughs with Bud, Not Buddy. Some of the humor may have gone over my kids heads, as this one was just has enjoyed by my husband and I.
Looking forward to more delightful reads in 2019!