I love reading. In fact, I love buying books. There's something rewarding about just buying a book and putting it on your shelf (even if you haven't read the last 10 books you bought!) Okay, I admit it – I'm addicted!
The truth is that reading is such a great way to learn and to expand your perspective on life and God's world. Wisdom is the principal thing, so make every effort to acquire it (Prov.4:5-9).
Here are twelve non-fiction books that will make stimulating reading for you from a variety of disciplines:
- [Culture] – Advance Australia ... Where? by Hugh Mackay. Mackay is a highly respected Australian social researcher and his latest book gives us a detailed picture of the changes that have taken place in Australian society over the last 30 years, as well as some insights into where we may be heading as a nation. [For those living outside of Australia, why not check our Microtrends by Mark J. Penn which takes a look at the small forces behind the big changes taking place in our world].
- [Church] – Beyond Megachurch Myths – What we can Learn from America's Largest Churches by Scott Thumma and Dave Travis. This is a helpful read for anyone wanting to better understand the changing landscape of churches, both large and small.
- [Family] – The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Families by Stephen R. Covey. Written by the best-selling author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, this book has a wealth of insight and suggestions for building a strong healthy family.
- [History] – The Story of Christianity (2 volumes) by Justo L. Gonzales. These two volumes are a very informative and entertaining read of the unfolding history of the church from the first century through to the twentieth century.
- [Leadership] – The Leadership Pipeline: How to Build the Leadership Powered Company by Ram Charan. This is a very good book on leadership development within organisations – how to create a process for training your own leaders.
- [Ministry] – 7 Practices of Effective Ministry by Andy Stanley, Reggie Joiner and Lane Jones. This book contains down-to-earth and practical principles for building a healthy and effective ministry.
- [Politics] – God's Politics: Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn't Get It by Jim Wallis. In this book, the author challenges both the Left and Right sides of the political arena. His section on 'Moving Beyond the Politics of Complaint', where he shows that protest is good but alternatives are better, is excellent.
- [Preaching] – Communicating for a Change: Seven Keys to Irresistible Communication by Andy Stanley. This book offers a fresh and innovative approach to contemporary communication.
- [Psychology] – Learned Optimism: How to Change Your Mind and Your Life by Martin Seligman. The author is a Jewish psychologist who helped to spearhead the positive psychology movement. This is a very insightful book about developing an optimistic, hopeful outlook on life (essentially good 'mind renewal' stuff).
- [Relationships] – Sacred Sex: A Spiritual Celebration of Oneness in Marriage by Tim Alan Gardner. An excellent book, written for married couples, from which I gleaned quite a few thoughts for my recent series on the same topic.
- [Spirituality] – Eat this Book: A Conversation in the Art of Spiritual Reading by Eugene Peterson. This is an excellent book on the art of effective Bible reading.
- [Theology] – Simply Christian: Why Christianity Makes Sense by NT Wright. This book, written by one of today's leading theologians, has been compared to C.S. Lewis' Mere Christianity, but for a new generation.