Thursday, January 24, 2013

Favourite faith-based reads

For today's post, I'm only going with non-fiction. I've gone on and on (multiple times) about my love for Christian fiction, particularly that of the historical persuasion, and I figure it's time for a change.

Apologies in advance for the quickly-made collage - here are my four favourites.

Going clockwise, top left:
1. God's Little Devotional Book For Teens: David C Cook
2. Experiencing God: Youth Edition: Henry T Blackaby & Claude V King
3. The Case for Christ/The Case for Faith [bindup]: Lee Strobel (now out of print in this format)
4. Every Young Woman's Battle: Shannon Ethridge & Stephen Arterburn
As I made the aforementioned quick collage, I realised something.
All of these books (with the exception of Lee Strobel) are aimed at the youth/teen market, a market which I can no longer say I inhabit.
Sigh. Time to upgrade.

Commentary time!
(I'm so sorry about how vague this commentary is; normally, I can flick through my books and it'll remind me of things I really enjoyed about them. However, books are in another state.)

God's Little Devotional Book for Teens: I have no other reason except for the devotional involving Ananias of Damascus, which has been bookmarked so often that if I fling that book onto my bed, it automatically opens to that devotional. That one story, of a man who did something because God told him to - something that, at the time, didn't seem like much in the greater scheme of things. It reminds me that whatever I'm doing, I should be doing it for Christ, and I should be listening to what He's telling me to do. It might seem insignificant to me, but may be very significant to someone else - or to God.

Experiencing God, Youth Edition: We did this as a study at Sunday School with Robyn and the lovely Sunday School girls. At the time, I recall it being quite confronting, and getting pretty annoyed with it. However, over the course of the study, my perspective changed - and my attitude towards my Christian life, too. Definitely worth the read. I also have the adult edition in my room, ready to begin. I intended to start this last year, but Christmas/shenanigans ensued and I have basically just failed miserably at it. Will update on that one as I do it, possibly.

The Case for Christ/The Case for Faith: When I was a teenager, I was not the most fond of Christianity. I was raised in a Catholic home, and my parents were rather relaxed about it. So relaxed, in fact, that when it came time for my brother and I to receive our communion and the like, they decided we could wait, and that the Catholic Sunday School the priest was urging us to attend was not as good as the one we were attending.
I then went to a Catholic school. Disgruntled at how we were being told by priests that the Bible was not completely true, and that things should be taken with a grain of salt, I got mad at Christianity in general and sat in a bit of agnosticism for a while. While this eventually gave way to me giving my life to Christ, I still had niggling doubts. Yay for niggling doubts (she says with her sarcasm hand aloft)!

I think it was at a youth group auction (end of year shenanigans) that I first came across the youth edition of The Case for Christ, and it helped clear up a lot of my niggling doubts - or, if it didn't give me complete assurance, I was able to pinpoint more doubts and ask Robyn about them so she could help me clear them up. She recommended reading the adult version, and as Koorong had it with The Case for Faith, I read both. I'm not hugely familiar with many apologetics studies, but I did enjoy these and found them helpful.

Every Young Woman's Battle: Oh. My. Gosh. 
If there is a book that I intend to foist on every young Christian woman out there, this is it. Seriously, if a crazy person comes up to you and gives you this book, don't worry. It's just me. BUT YOU SHOULD READ IT. 
(I've written about this book before - link here - but what I can also say now is that it sure beats sneaking into your brother's room and stealing the guy's copy because you're really not sure what else to do.)

There we are for that! If anyone has recommendations for me in this area, let me know. I'm always up for new things to read. 

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