What to Read Next
As many of you know I (Natalie) am an avid bookworm (of adult and children's books) and I find reading to be integral to my faith walk. A few of them that have encouraged me along the way include the following:
As a recovering perfectionist, Norris does a fabulous job of stripping down the notion of what utility and purpose looks like in the heavenly realm, reminding us that even the quotidian is holy to our Lord. It is a short read, less than 90 pages, but one that I go back and reference often.
Many know Banning Liebscher as founder and pastor of Jesus Culture but I came to know him through his book Rooted which is a fabulous look at David in Scriptures and how his rootedness in Christ came in three areas: intimacy, serving and community. Living in an area of the country where the winters are long and spring is hard-won, Rooted to me is a timely reminder of how the Lord works in us, and through us, even when we can't see the tangible results.
Many are familiar with Anne Lamott, and I've read and love many of her works, but when I tire of all the current pop-culture faith literature around I often turn back to her writing: simple, childlike and full of wonder. As she says, the two best prayers are "Help me, help me, help me" and "Thank you, thank you, thank you". If that doesn't sum up the Gospel, I don't know what else does.
I love how author Shauna Pilgreen refers to this as "living sent" and it's exactly how we should live: we never know if that mom we meet at the grocery store is the new friend or a little child playing with yours at the park is a future bestie. I firmly believe that we don't just "end up" somewhere. We are put in our villages, cities, suburbs for a reason and opening our eyes to those around us with grace and compassion lets us see how we can help: be with the gift of hospitality, the gift of business, the gift of empathy. 'Love Where you Live' maps out how we can rejoice in where we live, and actively love on our community, because we can rest in the fact that we were sent here for a reason.
Part memoir, part cookbook this is a book that I have gifted many times over, both to the seasoned Christ follower and to people of other faith traditions. Niequist has the gift of writing to lovers of food, relationships and books alike, and the alchemy that happens when those communities intertwine. Her writing style is vulnerable and relatable and let's just say that "Annette's Layered Chicken Enchiladas" were my staple new-mom meal for a few years they are that good!