Introduction to 90 Days in Genesis, Exodus, Psalms and Galatians with Calvin, Luther, Bullinger and Cranmer

Balloons and Streamers

This year marks the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation! If this were an iPhone text and not a blog post you’d read that sentence while confetti rained down around it.  On 31 October 1517 Martin Luther, greatly distressed by the corruption in the medieval church, nailed his 95 theses to the church door at Wittenberg. This sparked a debate about repentance and where forgiveness is truly found and so the Reformation began.

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The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert (Rosaria B)

When you’re writing about a book, it goes without saying that you refer to the author once by their full name, and just their surname from then on. But all the while that I was writing this post, I kept catching myself typing the writer’s first name (and yes, here I am, clumsily giving away my routine adherence to one timeless piece of writing advice – always write the introduction last!). Where most books tend to situate characters or ideas in between the writer and the reader, creating space between them, an extra step for the reader to take in understanding something of the writer, The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert instead offers an open invitation into the writer’s own, very personal journey. In reading the first few chapters, I came to feel that I had a familiar relationship with the writer. Each page extended reflections on her extraordinary journey to faith, with the generosity and vulnerability of a new friend, Rosaria.

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Di WarrenComment
7 Women and the secret of their greatness: Eric Metaxas [Part 3]

Saint Maria of Paris. Before reading Metaxas’ book I had never heard of this woman. Her life is intriguing. Maria was a Ukrainian Orthodox Christian, born in Latvia, but raised in Russia and Paris. She married, divorced, married again, had that marriage annulled, had 2 children and became a nun! As a nun she smoked, drank alcohol and did not follow the rituals required of her according to the Orthodox Church. She was not what I was expecting when I read her name in the contents page of this book!

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7 Women and the secret of their greatness: Eric Metaxas [Part 2]

“Poets are the unacknowledged legislators of the world” says Percy Bysshe Shelley, and indeed this would be a fitting epitaph for the life of Hannah More who we meet in “7 women”. She had such a profound influence on history that it is amazing that she is not better known. One of the joys of reading “7 Women” has been discovering the wide and long ranging impact women have had on society, motivated by their deep faith in God and the way He used them to speak out.

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7 Women and the secret of their greatness: Eric Metaxas

I’ve really been enjoying reading ‘7 women, and the secret of their greatness’, but I have to admit, the subtitle of this book (‘and the secret of their greatness’) put me off at first. I was worried the book would focus only on the worldly successes of these women which led to their ‘greatness’. But since reading the book, this misconception was unfounded. Metaxas revealshow these Seven women all lived with courage and humility often in the face of incredible suffering and opposition. Metaxas shows the secret of these women’s greatness lies in their Christ-like humility and that by reading their stories from the past, we can be encouraged to live for Christ in our time and culture.

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None Like Him: Jen Wilkin

I read Jen Wilkin’s latest book, None Like Him, with our women’s book discussion group at Moore College. There was some initial confusion with the title as some people heard it as ‘Nun like Him’, but thankfully the book is not a calling back to the convents! Instead Wilkin seeks to take us through a list of ten attributes that belong to God alone, and tease out how it is we try to rival God in possessing these attributes that belong to Him alone.

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The Garden, The Curtain and the Cross: Carl Laferton + Catalina Echeverri

The True Story of Why Jesus Died and Rose Again

If you love Biblical Theology, and if you love really good kids books, and especially if you teach kids you will enjoy this book. At Easter I read The Garden, The Curtain and The Cross to my kids, I read it to my scripture class and I read it to the kids in crèche at church. The illustrations are beautiful and most importantly, it teaches the whole story of the Bible and shows God’s amazing plan of salvation through Jesus.

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Capturing God: Rico Tice

How do you picture God?

Being a mum with 3 little kids, I wasn’t sure when I’d be able to fit in reading and reflecting on this a book. But when it arrived in the post, not only did I devour it’s 60 pages in one short sitting, I found myself rereading bits and excitedly texting them to a friend. I also felt compelled to pray for opportunities to give this to a few people who I think would benefit from reading it.

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Together Through the Storm: A Practical Guide to Christian Care by Sally Sims

Another book about pastoral care? But I’ve read so many already. I don’t have time to read another book on pastoral care, because I’m so busy cooking an extra Bolognese dinner every second week for a sick congregation member or new mum. This new book by Sally Sims brings a wealth of pastoral insight gleaned from years as a member of her local church, as well as further study and research, and is a great new read on a central but often poorly explained aspect of pastoral care – what makes it Christian?

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Di WarrenComment
Zeal without Burnout by Christopher Ash

If you’re attracted to the title of this book, there’s every chance you’re a Christian who knows what it’s like to be zealous for God. Zeal is after all a word for people who like it intense. Or maybe it’s that second word, “burnout” that has caught your eye. Perhaps you know all too well what it’s like when the energy and motivation you once had for Christian ministry, or saw in others, evaporates like morning dew, leaving in its wake fatigue, depression and nervous exhaustion.

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Revolutionary Sex: How the good news of Jesus changes everything

“Our culture has made an idol out of sexual intimacy and suggests that we cannot be truly fulfilled unless we express our sexual desires. The Bible teaches otherwise.”

I read this book in January after hearing a week of inspiring talks by William Taylor. Two things stood out for me in the way that Taylor preached. He was humble in admitting that he is a sinner just like everyone else. And he never shied away from preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ, even when what he said was uncomfortable or in contrast to mainstream ideas promoted in society today.

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