January 16, 2015

May I Recommend? (Suggestions for Your Season)

One of my favorite things to do in our church is to connect women with one another and watch their friendship blossom. I am almost fanatical about making it happen, and I'm not afraid of being awkward or annoying in introducing people with similar interests, seasons of life, or backgrounds. The most satisfying matches, however, are connecting women who have questions with women who have answers to those questions and then watching mentoring, community, and spiritual growth develop.
I do this with books, too. I've told everyone I know probably a zillion times in the past few years to read Unbroken. And now it's Notes from the Tilt-a-Whirl and The Warmth of Other Suns. I feel myself going off agenda here, which is what happens when books get on my brain.

Anyway . . .

Can I connect you with some resources today? Most of them are free and some I've shared recently on the blog, but I wanted to have all them in one spot for you. I hope you'll find in one or more of these resources a "match" for a season you're in. I'm just so happy to introduce you to great material and watch what develops out of it. Let me know what you choose to read in the comments below, would you?

Needing structure for your spiritual life? 
May I introduce you to the Naptime Diaries Lent Devotional? This little ditty of a book is 40-day devotional designed with Lent in mind, but really could be used throughout the year. Not only is it written by a wide range of authors (including yours truly), but it is simply beautiful to look at.

I love the tagline of the book: Watching, Waiting, Wonder. We're invited to watch for Jesus, wait for Jesus, and wonder at Him. I hope you'll work through this devotional with me this spring.

Naptime Diaries is offering a 15% discount to my readers if you hop over to their site and use the code "Christine". Go on, hop over. I'll wait here for your return.

Needing encouragement as you mother? 
Desiring God has compiled essays into a book called Mom Enough, all of which expound on and answer the foolishness of competitive mothering. This is not necessarily a practical book; it's a foundations book for all mothers who want to think about their role through the lens of the gospel.

They've made the pdf or Kindle version of the book free on their website, but if you're like me and want to hold a real book in your hand, you can buy a paper copy on Amazon.

New to a community or new to church planting? 
My friend Shauna Pilgreen, a fellow church planting wife and fellow mom of three boys, has written an ebook called Live Sent: 31 Days in the City. Shauna and her family moved to San Francisco five years ago to plant Epic Church. She mapped out a plan for how they were going to learn, embrace, and engage San Francisco. That plan has become Live Sent, although instead of just San Francisco, she invites us all to look at our new (or very familiar) communities with fresh eyes and to begin engaging our communities with the gospel.

Send Network is offering the ebook for free, but Shauna also has an extended version with loads of practical ideas and templates available for $2.99 on her website. 

Struggling under the weight of pressure, shame, or guilt? Or just needing a broader understanding of grace? 
Y'all, my second book, From Good to Grace, is almost here! The ebook version releases on February 24 and the paperback version on March 3. You can preorder your copy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Christianbook.com, or iTunes.

Can I tell you why I wrote From Good to Grace? We all are trying so very hard to be good Christians and good moms and good wives and good friends and the list could go on. But God has something greater for us than being good. We need to know what that is, because trying to be good is killing us inside.

You can get a taste of the book to see if it might be something you'd like to read (oh, I hope so!) by sampling the first chapter.

If you like it, will you invite others to read it with you? It's the kind of book best read if you can also process it with others. I've even included a handy discussion guide in the back of the book for that very reason.

Could you use a little more cowbell? I mean, er, Grace Covers Me?
I really don't want this blog to ever be an infomercial, but I do want to have a space where I can share behind-the-blog details with those who want them. So I've started sending out an occasional newsletter (a whopping one has been sent so far) that enables me to share more private writing, books I'm reading (see my love for books above), and other things I'm loving.

I'll be sending out a newsletter next week in which I share a fun idea for the new year, some incredibly great music that I can't wait for you to hear, and details about how you can join my book launch team.

If you read Grace Covers Me by email, you are already signed up for this newsletter, but if you read it in a blog reader, you can sign up to receive the very occasional newsletter here. Thank you for entrusting your email address to me. I don't take that lightly.

Now, what do you have to share with us? Any blogs you're loving? Books? Resources? Music? Inquiring minds want to know.