Reading is one of my favorite things to do. That probably comes as no surprise to anyone who has been hanging around Intentional By Grace for any length of time.
I often share about what I’ve been reading or am reading when I give a monthly update, and I realized during my blogging sabbatical that I’ve never shared my favorite books of all time.
Of course, this list is subject to change since I read a lot of books each year, but I thought it would be fun to share my absolute favorite books as it stands right now and why.
My favorite books are books that have affected me deeply, stirred thoughts in which I’ve never thought before, or deepened my walk with the Lord.
The books on this list have impacted my life and quite likely they are books that I’ve read and re-read several times. These are the books that are forever near my side, sitting on the shelf among my Bible, commentaries, and prayer journal. These are books that I recommend to friends often and can often be found giving away as gifts for birthdays, anniversaries, and the birth of children.
Therefore, I hope that you’ll consider this list my gift to you. Perhaps one of these books will make your top books of all time too!
Now without further ado, here’s my top five favorite books of all time
. And by the way, they are in no particular order. I’m not even going to torment myself and try to put them in a ranking.
by Francine Rivers – This book spoke to the deep recesses of my heart. As one who has a past of sexual sin
, I carried the weight of this into my days of knowing Jesus as my Lord and Savior. I held onto my shame, and I couldn’t reconcile my sin with the undeserved grace of Jesus. This book is a fictional story based on the truth of God’s word, and it was pivotal in my release from the bondage of past sins. It was balm to my broken heart, and it helped to begin a healing that would take years to complete.
Treasuring Christ When Your Hands Are Full: Gospel Meditations for Busy Moms
by Gloria Furman – I read this book recently, and it quickly entered my top five favorite books of all time. The mission of this book isn’t to give some cookie cutter answer to a mom in the trenches, but to give us the gospel over and over and over again. This book was rich in truth and application of the gospel to our daily lives as mothers and it has transformed the lens through which I see my life as a mother.
The Hidden Art of Homemaking
by Edith Schaeffer – Another book that I finally read recently, and it too quickly entered my top five books of all time. I actually read many parts of this book aloud to my husband, and he too enjoyed it – not for his own calling but to understand my heart and calling in my home. This book is filled with practical ideas of gospel homemaking and why we, as women, feel a deep need and desire to create beauty in our homes. And even why we should! Even as it gives practical ideas and suggestions for creating a home that makes it impossible to not think about God, it’s not legalistic in the slightest. It was refreshing and full of grace!
Stepping Heavenward: One Woman’s Journey to Godliness
by Elizabeth Prentiss – I’m tempted to say this is my number one favorite book and it probably is. But I’m too scared to admit it. The pressure! 😉 This book was given to me by one of my past pastor’s wives, and it has stuck with me for years. I read it as a brand new mother, and quite frankly I need to read it again. I think the single most effective thing that was said int his book was this, “God knows these seasons of motherhood and He ordained them. He gets more glory when we serve our children with a joyful heart than He would if we were able to steal away for private devotions with Him.” Oh how I need this reminder often!
Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life
by Donald Whitney – This book is dogeared and tattered to near pieces. I wrote about this book years ago (you can read it here
). This book is a great outline for areas of a Christian’s life in which we should discipline ourselves. It is a helpful tool in the pursuit of godliness.
Because two books recently took the top spots, I wanted to mention the ones that got bumped.
I think the only reason they got bumped is simply because they don’t speak to a woman’s heart exclusively and aren’t quite as applicable immediately as the two newest additions. Maybe. Perhaps? I’m not sure.
Either way, the following books are equally as good as the rest, and I still highly recommend them.
Spiritual Depression: Its Causes and Its Cure
by Dr. Martin Lloyd Jones – Another book I read nearly a decade ago! It is harder to read and I think the book could use a new edit and update (there is a lot of redundancy), BUT the truths and poignant challenges of this book are worth muddling through the extras. The main theme of this book is to address the lack of joy in a Christian’s life when we should be the most joy-filled bunch! It’s not flippant or cookie cutter, and it doesn’t gloss over hard topics. It’s a book that will bring you to your knees often, and I’d say going to my knees is not something I do near enough.
All of Grace: Know That God’s Gift of Salvation Is Absolutely Free and Available to Everyone
by Charles H. Spurgeon – Oh the sweet, sweet grace of Jesus! I’ve always been prone to intentional living. Grace has alluded me for years. It’s something I’ve understood intellectually, but application has always been a block of stumbling for me. This book kick started a movement in my heart to not only understand grace in my mind, but in my heart and life as well. This book cuts through legalism with a knife and shattered me to pieces as God worked in my heart to put me back together through the lens of grace.
What about you? What are you top five all time favorite books? I’d love to hear about them in the comments!
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