Spiritual books are my companions on my way home to God. Books are my spiritual friends and I love spending time with them. And most of all I love that they enrich my thinking, empower my spiritual walk, and encourage me on my pilgrimage.
Of course, the most important book in any Christian’s life is the Bible. I cherish it and I devour it daily. I enjoy comparing different translations and I am forever in awe how God can speak through it. But I do have other favorite books, too. I thought to share my odd selection of top four spirituality books with you.
My favorite author is Eugene H. Peterson. I could have picked pretty much any of his book on this list but I chose A Long Obedience in the Same Direction because already the name convey the essence of Christian pilgrimage. Peterson writes “Millions of people in our culture makes decisions for Christ, but there is a dreadful attrition rate. May claim to have been born again, but the evidence for mature Christian discipleship is slim. In our kind of culture anything, even news about God, can be sold if it is packaged freshly; but when it loses its novelty, it goes on the garbage heap. There is a market for religious experience in our world; there is little enthusiasm for the patient acquisition of virtue, little inclination to sign up for a long apprenticeship in what earlier generations of Christians called holiness.”
Grace Adolphsen Brame’s book Faith, the Yes of the Heart is an inspiring book for modern spiritual pilgrims. Just like Peterson, Grace Brame shares the idea that faith is not just a matter of theology but of practicing what we believe. She writes “Faith is the conduit for God’s life-giving love. It is not faith that saves us, but God’s incredible grace. But grace needs a way to be incarnate. It needs people, lives. It needs a word that can be heard and lips that will speak it. It needs nature to manifest it and sacraments to share it. It needs songs sung and silence in which to listen. Faith receives the that saves.”
Roberta Bondi’s book To Pray & To Love, Conversations on Prayer with the Early Church helped me when I struggled to forgive and yearned to be healed. Bondi writes “Where we cannot hope, we pray for hope; where we cannot face the long and unknown road of the resurrection, we can pray for the desire to be healed.”
Michael Marshall’s book Flame in the Mind, a Journal of Spiritual Passion is probably the most unknown of these books. But this is a delightful book. He writes “Christianity is not an ideology; it is not a religion in the strict sense of the word, nor it is a philosophy. Christianity is not anything: Christianity is somebody. It is Jesus and the resurrection”. Marshall shows us that the gift of grace turns duty into desire, legalism into spontaneity, and obligation into a life of gratitude overflowing in love, holiness, worship and service.
How blessed we are to have these kind of books to equip us on our way back home to God. It’s like having a cloud of witnesses cheering you on.
Do you see what this means—all these pioneers who blazed the way, all these veterans cheering us on? It means we’d better get on with it. Strip down, start running—and never quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins. Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—he could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever. And now he’s there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. When you find yourselves flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item by item, that long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into your souls! (Hebrews 12:1-3, MSG)
Thank you for our spiritual friends,
both death and living who are cheering us on.
Thank you for spiritual books
that enrich our minds and inspire our faith.
But, most of all, thank you for sending us Jesus
and giving us the scriptures.
Bless each of us according to our needs.
In Jesus’ name,
Q4U: What are your favorite spiritual books?
Be blessed, my fellow pilgrim, as you steadily advance on your way home to God!
Note to readers: This post contains affiliate links. This means when you click on links to various merchants on this site and make a purchase, this can result in a commission that is credited to this site. Some affiliate programs and affiliations include, but are not limited to, Christianbook.com and Amazon.com. I only recommend companies and products I personally love and I believe will benefit you. This disclosure complies with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” : “Click here for more information.”