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What I was reading in 2009

December 31, 2009

I am an avid reader, and I spend way too much money on books. I was also given some Amazon gift cards by some awesome people in my life, so this book addiction probably will not change in 2010. So that’s my confession (and shout out to the gift-givers!)

However, I do find that study is a vital part of my spiritual life, and I find that I feel close to God while engaging in the practice of study. Much of what I read revolves around the scriptures and theological works (not surprising, as I am a pastor and seminary student), and I am grateful for the ways that God sharpens us through our practice of study. Even more so when the books lead to conversations & discussions with others, as there is an important community aspect to “study” (if we choose to experience it).

Here is a list of what I have been reading in ’09:

Artists, Citizens, Philosophers: Seeking the Peace of the City: An Anabaptist Theology of Culture, by Duane Friesen

Post-Christendom: Church and Mission in a Strange New World, by Stuart Murray. I was fortunate to have the opportunity to meet Stuart Murray this past year, and was very excited to be able to welcome him to teach & preach at my church back in March. I am very thankful for his work and for the continuing insights that he and the folks from the Anabaptist Network UK share with us.

The Hidden Power of Electronic Culture: How Media Shapes Faith, the Gospel, and Church, by Shane Hipps

The Great Emergence: How Christianity is Changing and Why, by Phyllis Tickle

The Hip-Hop Church: Connecting with the Movement Shaping Our Culture, by Efrem Smith and Phil Jackson

The Suburban Christian: Finding Spiritual Vitality in the Land of Plenty, by Albert H. Hsu

The Future is Mestizo: Life Where Cultures Meet, by Virgilio Elizondo

Beliefs: Mennonite Faith and Practice, by John D. Roth

Embracing Grace: A Gospel for All of Us, by Scot McKnight

Justification: God’s Plan and Paul’s Vision, by N.T. Wright (I have not completed this book yet)

Communion Shapes Character, by Eleanor Kreider. I found this wonderful book on the “discount” shelf at my local Christian bookstore. I only wish more of the regular shelves held titles as good as this one.

The Lost World of Genesis One: Ancient Cosmology and the Origins Debate, by John Walton (I have not completed this book yet)

Mutual Treasure: Seeking Better Ways for Christians and Culture to Converse, Edited by Harold Heie and Michael A. King.

Love Is An Orientation: Elevating the Conversation with the Gay Community, by Andrew Marin (also have not completed this book yet; only a few chapters left)

All of the above are books that connected in some way with my life or the life of my church community (or both). I would wholeheartedly recommend any of them: they have challenged and shaped my thinking and living, pushing me out of my comfort zone at times (which I appreciate, even when I feel a little uncomfortable).

In addition to these works, I also read some “fun stuff” as well, like:

Moneyball:The Art of Winning an Unfair Game, by Michael Lewis. I am a fan of Lewis and have read this book 4-5 times since it came out. In addition to being a Phillies fan I also follow the Oakland A’s and admire the work of Oakland’s GM Billy Beane (one of the main subjects of the book). I find it funny that this book STILL gets ripped unmercifully by baseball “purists”, who to this day still don’t seem to grasp Lewis’ point (or “story” he’s telling).

The Harry Potter Series, by J. K. Rowling. This is becoming an annual thing, and one that I enjoy thoroughly.

The Cylon’s Secret, by Craig Shaw Gardner. It was not enough to only watch the best sci-fi/drama ever created; I had to read about it too.

That’s about it. Love to hear your thoughts on these books if you’ve read them as well. I’ve got a big pile of books already lined up for 2010 so far, and I look forward to digging in to those very soon. Here’s to a good year of reading, learning, and conversation!

  1. wezlo permalink
    January 1, 2010 2:00 am

    Oh wow, it automatically did a trackback for me! Sweet!

    Merry Christmas Chris!


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