2022 Recommended Reading
As we enter into 2022, I would like to continue to challenge us as a church to be a reading people. Various forms of video and audio technology are threatening to completely press out of people’s lives the discipline of reading the written word. Yet God has revealed Himself to us by the written word. This is not a coincidence and cannot be effectively “evolved forward” into a better form of revelation. We must discipline our minds to be critical, thoughtful, and effective readers. Reading other books regularly will help you read the Bible more clearly and thoughtfully. Every year around this time I will share with you some of the books I most enjoyed last year. Also this year, other leaders from around the church will share their recommendations.
Most of these books are available in the church library. We maintain a church library to facilitate the reading of good Christian books. Many thanks to Karen Robinson for managing this effort. I would ask that as you take books from the library that you follow the basic lending procedures and return the books you have read in a timely manner, so others can enjoy them as well. Part of the library ministry is giving away Bibles. We want everyone to have a Bible to read. If you know someone that does not have a Bible, please ask Karen for one from the library and give it to the person in need. If you struggle to understand the Bible, Karen can give you a study Bible to help you better understand what the Bible is about and how it is organized.
May you love the Lord your God with all your mind! Let’s all aim to read more quality books in 2022.
- Pastor Vic
Favorites from Pastor Vic:
Setting Our Affections Upon Things Above; Nine Sermons on the Gospel and the Church, by D. Martin Lloyd Jones. Insightful, inspiring, and Christ-honoring sermons by one of the greatest preachers of all time.
Evangelism; How the Whole Church Speaks of Jesus, by J. Mack Stiles. This is a very encouraging and practical book on how our entire church must work together to bring lost people to Jesus. You’ll hear more from me this year on this book. Let’s have a joyful and mission focused heart toward the lost!
George Whitfield, by Arnold A. Dallimore. This outstanding biography examines the inspiring life of one of the greatest evangelist to ever be used by God. Whitfield was one of the most important figures in the first great awakening. He preached to more people without voice amplification than any other person that has ever lived. This biography is available in a two volume set, or a condensed one volume paperback.
Martin Luther; The Man Who Rediscovered God and Changed the World, by Eric Metaxas. This up to date and very well written biography helps the reader understand the evolution of one man’s life from lost in religious formalism to salvation by grace alone through faith alone in Jesus Christ our Lord. Martin Luther is one of the most important characters in church history. If you are unfamiliar with his life, you should read this book.
Gentle and Lowly, by Dane Ortlund. This book explores the often neglected aspect of the character of Jesus in being gentle, merciful, and kind. The fruits of the Spirit include gentleness, kindness, and goodness. These qualities won’t get you very far in the high pressure competitive world we currently live in. However, they are a central part of the character of Jesus and must be a central part of our spiritual development.
Out of Many, One; Portraits of America’s Immigrants, by George W. Bush. In this inspiring book President Bush paints a (literal) portrait of each immigrant then briefly tells their story. This book will inspire you and bring you to tears as you read story after story related to courage, intense hard work, hope in the goodness of God, and the merciful helping hands of one neighbor helping another make a better life. This book will reset your mindset toward immigration, love of neighbor, and how, as Christians, we must relate to these important issues.
Alongside; Loving Teenagers with the Gospel, by Andrew Hill. This very passionate and practical book will help parents and grandparents understand how to bridge the gap between the generations to effectively love our teens and share Jesus with them. If you have a teenager, you need to take your time reading this one.
Mike Patterson – Elder
Autobiography of George Muller, George Muller. This is the story of George Mueller and his journey from a life of sin and rebellion to his glorious conversion. In the middle of both struggles and triumphs, he established orphan homes to care for thousands of poor children of England. He depended upon God’s daily miraculous responses to his prayers to supply all their needs. George Mueller’s unwavering faith and childlike dependence upon his heavenly Father inspired me to confidently trust the God of the impossible to meet my needs in every area of my life. George Mueller was an ordinary man who did great things because he trusted in an extraordinary God.
Prayer, by John Onwuchekwa. Of all the books that have been written on prayer, this one had a very specific purpose: examining how prayer shapes the life of the church. The author goes on to explain how a church’s commitment to prayer is one of the greatest determiners of its effectiveness in ministry. This book is personal and practical yet interesting and easy to read; mostly about corporate prayer in the church but loaded with personal stories and illustrations.
The author makes the most compelling statement on prayer when he says, “To be a Christian without prayer is no more possible than to be alive without breathing.” Breathing, like prayer, is necessary for everything that we do.
Bob Sawyer – Elder
The Pursuit of God – Updated Edition, by A.W. Tozer
Sherry Morgan – Children’s Ministry Director
Twelve Extraordinary Women, by John MacArthur. This book highlights some of the best known women in the Bible. The women he chose to write about are: Eve, Sarah, Rahab, Ruth, Hannah, Mary, Anna, The Samaritan Woman, Martha & Mary, Mary Magdalene and Lydia. MacArthur writes a chapter about each woman with Martha and Mary sharing a chapter. The single, central, dominant truth that emerges is that their faith and hopes were completely Christ-centered. They were ordinary women who were made extraordinary because of their life-changing faith in God. None of the women were perfect, but their stories are comforting because they are a reminder
that God has always used imperfect people, “that the excellence of the power may be of God
and not of us” (2 Corinthians 4:7)
Rodney Swann – Men’s & Missions Ministry Director
What is Reformed Theology? Understanding the Basics, by RC Sproul. In this book Dr. Sproul explains the biblical basics of this often misunderstood system of doctrine. He examines the Bible to bring clarity to many passages that are often skipped or wrongly understood by the church.