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From My Bookshelf to Yours: What I Read in October

This month was a big month of reading for me. If you’re subscribed to my newsletter or following me on Instagram, then you already know that we are expecting a new baby. I’ve spent a lot of time curled up on the couch reading or watching TV while my two little boys romp around me.

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I wanted to share what I’ve been reading with you because I’ve read some really incredible books this month. These are books that are definitely worth adding to your reading list!

Here’s the list I read in October:

Edited November 5, 2015 at 12:00pm EST: Based on comments and emails since this post went live, I have decided to edit the original language of this post for clarification purposes. I have crossed out the original language and made changes for clarity using brackets to indicate any edits. I did not want to delete the original language so that those who have commented already wouldn’t look as though they didn’t read this post properly, etc. I do not plan to respond to comments on this post although I will prayerfully read each and every one of them. It is not with malice that I wrote this post. I will write openly and more elaborately in the future on this subject since I do realize that I opened a Pandora’s box and am making some pretty bold statements. I had already planned to write more, but I needed to make that clarification now.

Out of Mormonism: A Woman’s True StoryI confess that I know very little about other religions, but this is something I am seeking to know more about. [For too long, I have buried my head in the sand and not taken time to learn the history of Christianity let alone other world religions. I’m still very green in my understanding. However, I have been on a quest for wisdom over the last couple of years, and I’m grateful for books and resources that are so readily available to help me dig out of my ignorant state and into the knowledge of the truth.]ย  Reading this book was a real eye opener for me. It’s an account from one woman and her family of a controversial religion, but it was helpful in getting my mind [further] wrapped around what I consider a very dangerous movement of religion that is ever-growing around us.

This book was full of details and information I had not been aware of previously [from my research], and now that I have opened Pandora’s box [further], I’m seeking to learn more and more. We must know our Bibles and we must know what people around us are teaching others. Mormonism is a dangerous religion. They are not Christians. It’s not even remotely the same as Christianity. [Mormonism is not a sect of Christianity because we cannot alter the historical definition of Christianity which is my basis of belief.] As Christians, We [all] need to educate ourselves and pray about how to combat false religion, [decipher false religion, and uphold the inerrant Word of God] that circles around us in love, truth, and grace. [I’m not advocating a harsh stance against Mormons. I am advocating speaking the truth in love. I’m advocating to sound the gong of truth, to KNOW what we BELIEVE and WHY.] For me, getting educated is a start, [and I believe this book gave a look into Mormonism out of a sincere love for the people within this movement who have been deceived. This was not a disillusioned church member out to destroy lives. This family has staked their life and ministry on bringing the discrepancies between the Latter Day Saints beliefs and historical Christianity to light.]

Interrupted: When Jesus Wrecks Your Comfortable Christianity – Wow! I was actually surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. I’ve followed Jen Hatmaker for years, and I have read many of her blog posts circulating the web. Her book, 7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess, was an excellent read that took me outside my Christian bubble by leaps and bounds. Yet not all that she writes jives with me. Much of it has given me pause over the last year or so and a lot of caution tape goes up for me. I don’t have any reasons other than I just don’t know her and I’m cautious by nature. As a writer, I’m aware of how easy it is to think we know someone by what they write, and I’m very leery of bandwagon followings because something appeals to our feelings. And the social justice movement is a good one but it has its flaws.

However, after reading this book, I grew in my understanding a little more of the Hatmakers heart and ministry. They aren’t perfect (and have never claimed to be), but this book could have very easily been written by Mark and me. Of course, our details are so different, but this book came at a time when we needed the encouragement of really crazy, radical, Jesus loving, sell out and trust Him in all of it family. A lot of their journey has paralleled our journey and we didn’t have a clue until I read this book, which probably the one book everyone should read by Jen. She and I might differ on some minor, non-Gospel related points (or we may not, I really don’t know), but this book is a must read book. I found myself reading much of it aloud to my husband, and by the time we were done reading … well, that’s for another post.

What did you read in October? What were your favorite reads?

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16 Comments

  1. It really upsets me to read such ignorance. Mormons are in fact Christians, and a biased book about the religion won’t really teach you the beliefs. Please do some research on the beliefs of the members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (the true name of the “Mormon” church) before making that claim.

    1. Based on comments and emails since this post went live, I have decided to edit the original language of this post for clarification purposes. I hope you’ll take time to re-read in order to gain a little better understanding of where I am coming from and why I made the statements I made. It won’t cover it all, but it is a start.

  2. I must say last week I was impressed by the way you spoke of celebrating Halloween as a Christian.

    Then this week you speak of another religion that you admit not knowing much about after reading one person’s experience and you speak of it as a dangerous religion.

    I went back and forth when I began following your blog, because I am not Christian, but I appreciated a lot of what you shared about living with intention. However, I’m disappointed today. I do not follow an organized religion and much of that is due to seeing how judgmental many religious people are. I like to live with an open mind and open heart and that is not acceptable in many religions so I avoid them completely. I usually don’t allow someone’s religion to determine whether they will be my friend or something I enjoy reading. Today, though I had to unfollow.

    1. Based on comments and emails since this post went live, I have decided to edit the original language of this post for clarification purposes. I hope you’ll take time to re-read in order to gain a little better understanding of where I am coming from and why I made the statements I made. It won’t cover it all, but it is a start.

    2. HI…just my too cents here…. You are right with avoiding religions. No person should impose anything on you. What will happen to your heart it will happen only by the will of God. It says in the Bible that He opens our hearts to receive Him and when that happens your life will change forever. You will never want to go back to how you were before. The peace in your heart…..it’s amazing!!! It is true that Christians can be a little (or a lot) judgmental. But….you never should let a person decide for you if you will believe or not in Christ. Pray a simple prayer, every day: “God reveal Yourself to me. I don’t really know You and what You can do, but I want to live the most amazing life I can. I hear You are THE ONE. Show me that”. Sorry…I kinda got off topic…..Religions are bad cause they push people away from God. What matters is Christ. In all you do just remember that. Once Christ is in your heart, it will come natural and He will guide you to the right church. Blessings!!!

  3. I highly recommend Unveiling Grace if you are curious about the Mormon church. I live in LDS country and met the author, who is wonderful and a dedicated Christian woman now. Fantastic read as well as informative.

  4. Wow. I guess I’ll have to stop following your blog since I’m obviously unwelcome here as a Mormon woman. I see you as a sister in Christ, since I am very much a Christian, and it saddens me that you are denouncing other believers. I can never understand how some of other denominations won’t accept the LDS as Christians. Our church is centered entirely around Christ’s teachings and we strive to become more like our Savior in every way. I’d love to know your reasoning as to why you don’t believe we are Christians. It’s also frustrating when people base their beliefs of the LDS church on what they learn from an ex-Mormon. I think that’s obviously a biased view. From my personal experience, those who leave the church do so because of bad experiences that were caused by flawed members, not a flawed church.

    1. Based on comments and emails since this post went live, I have decided to edit the original language of this post for clarification purposes. I hope you’ll take time to re-read in order to gain a little better understanding of where I am coming from and why I made the statements I made. It won’t cover it all, but it is a start.

    2. I am happy to say that I am a Mormon and very much a Christian. I know that you went back and restated some of what you had written, but it is still an opinion based on very little information. I know this is your blog and you have every right to say whatever you want, but I would be very careful before I ever called another person’s beliefs, that I didn’t completely understand, “dangerous.” Basing your perspective on the account of one disgruntled member who is trying to profit from sensationalism seems “dangerous” in itself.

      Anyone who would like to learn more about the Mormon church, it’s values, and what it teaches can visit mormon.org or lds.org.

  5. I am a member of The Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter-Day Saints, often referred to as “mormons”. I am very much a christian! Be very careful when basing statements on reading of little material and by someone /about someone who is no longer part of that religion! Read books on both sides of the ‘issue’ as it were, at least…

  6. I’m not a Mormon, and I disagree with many of their doctrines, but I am curious…what’s a Christian / a Christian church for you?

    1. Actually, don’t bother answering (or even publishing my question)…I just did a quick research in their site and I got your point…