Lenten Reading List

Lent begins today, and I’ve prepared a reading list for the next few weeks.

It’s a fairly short list, to be read one book per week or so. I’ve turned to Goodreads for synopses of the books.

The Knowledge of the Holy by popular evangelical author and Christian mystic A.W. Tozer illuminates God’s attributes—from wisdom, to grace, to mercy—and in doing so, attempts to restore the majesty and wonder of God in the hearts and minds of all Christians. A modern classic of Christian testimony and devotion, The Knowledge of the Holy shows us how we can rejuvenate our prayer life, meditate more reverently, understand God more deeply, and experience God’s presence in our daily lives.

  • Sick of Me, by Whitney Capps. I picked this one up in an effort to put my dollars where my mouth is and patronize an independent Christian bookstore. I just started it, and it’s surprisingly astute for a modern book. And I do get sick of me sometimes, so…

Our world is filled with fake facades, from the unrealistic filters used on social media to the “holier than thou” personas seen in certain hypocritical believers.

To combat the fake trends, a new trend has emerged—one that fights the facade with transparency and vulnerability. Instead of being filtered or super-spiritual, we’re told to be real and honest. And rightly so. We should be getting real with each other about our junk.

But should we stop there? Should we gather to simply commiserate about our current version of “me”? Is community about more than just feeling understood by one another in our hard places, or does God have actual change in store for us beyond brokenness

In Sick of Me, Whitney Capps shows us that spiritual growth means being both honest and holy—that we can come to Jesus just as we are, but we cannot stay that way. While virtues like vulnerability, honesty, and humility are desperately needed, we should fight for more. After all, the gospel is a change-agent.

  • Hinds Feet on High Places, by Hannah Hurnard. I’ve been meaning to read this one for quite some time, and what better time than Lent, when we are focused on the holy and redemptive work of Jesus:

With over 2 million copies sold, Hinds’ Feet on High Places remains Hannah Hurnard’s best known and most beloved book: a timeless allegory dramatizing the yearning of God’s children to be led to new heights of love, joy, and victory. In this moving tale, follow Much-Afraid on her spiritual journey as she overcomes many dangers and mounts at last to the High Places. There she gains a new name and is transformed by her union with the loving Shepherd.

Brother Lawrence was a man of humble beginnings who discovered the greatest secret of living in the kingdom of God here on earth. It is the art of “practicing the presence of God in one single act that does not end.” He often stated that it is God who paints Himself in the depths of our souls. We must merely open our hearts to receive Him and His loving presence.

As a humble cook, Brother Lawrence learned an important lesson through each daily chore: The time he spent in communion with the Lord should be the same, whether he was bustling around in the kitchen—with several people asking questions at the same time—or on his knees in prayer. He learned to cultivate the deep presence of God so thoroughly in his own heart that he was able to joyfully exclaim, “I am doing now what I will do for all eternity. I am blessing God, praising Him, adoring Him, and loving Him with all my heart.”

This unparalleled classic has given both blessing and instruction to those who can be content with nothing less than knowing God in all His majesty and feeling His loving presence throughout each simple day.

Are there any books you are planning to dive into as we pray and contemplate during this Lenten season?

 

 

 

 

6 thoughts on “Lenten Reading List

  1. hearthie says:

    Well, I know that three of those four books are excellent, and also short. Not short-to-digest, but short-to-read. 🙂

    Currently I’m reading Bowling Alone, which I’m enjoying but somewhat annoyed at myself for not waiting for the 2020 update. I’ll probably read that too… when it comes out! After that I have three more serious books to eat. My fav fantasy-fiction author will be out with her latest next month, but that’s a couple of days of light nomming.

    BTW – I’ve been taking notes with my reading, but that was slow, and I took BA to wait for kid pickup minus my notebook but with a pencil, and I’ve *become one of those horrors who writes in BOOKS* -shudder- Lots of thoughts came up though… I’ll have to pull the notebook and write ’em out as well as the citations I marked.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. smkoseki says:

    My Lent read: Jesus and the Last Supper (Pitre) https://amzn.to/2VtG6Sk which analyzes the Johnian-Synoptic variances.in unbelievable scholarly detail (it took Pitre 10 years) and crushes all challengers. Just started and can’t stop reading. I’ve studied all 4 gospels in detail for many many decades yet am now horrified by how wrong I am. Pitre literally shreds the Essene Hypothesis (my – and I think even Pope Benedict’s! – prior belief) to tatters. Lent just keeps getting better…

    H: currently reading Bowling Alone
    Do you mean by Putnum from like 2000? Or am I dating myself?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. nellperkins says:

    Hearthie, it’s really hard to not become one of those people who write in books if you’re going to read about prayer and contemplation!

    It’s not a protestant book, but I highly recommend Into the Silent Land by Martin Laird and the medieval Cloud of Unknowing (read it in the original Middle English if you want to out do me!)

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Elspeth says:

    That sounds like a fascinating read, SMK.

    I have to admit that my reading list was compiled on the fly as a result of several coincidental happenings.

    I read through the gispel of John every Lenten season, though. I’l have to add your book to my list of books to remember.

    Like

  5. hearthie says:

    SMK – Yes, that’s the one. I’m doing some very wide reading right now and “what is going on w/community” is one of the questions I’ve been interested in, have had lots of convos with friends about. I’m just annoyed because I saw all the “there’s a new version this summer” and said, “meh, those are never a big deal” but I can see from the first few chapters that it WILL be a big deal because the research should be updated/trends should be updated, and that’s going to be very interesting. That’s okay, I’m totally getting my money’s worth out of this version, so no worries. I’ll check the next out of the library, my library is sad but usually has this kind of thing in stock.

    Nell – I *hate* writing in books, because I don’t like it coloring what I get out of my books on a re-read. I’m using a pencil and after I get my thoughts put on paper, I’ll carefully erase. But for now, it’s radically speeding up (and making more convenient) my initial read through, and I really want to do a LOT of reading right now, so that’s a good thing. I’m shocked at my own temerity, writing in books, egads. I didn’t even do that in college.

    Liked by 1 person

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