In the past few weeks I have read several books, (because there isn’t much else to do when winter comes to central New York) and I didn’t spend a dime, all church library books.

  • The Insanity of God: A True Story of Resurrected Faith by Nik Ripken—You can read a review on this book here. Now I don’t have to do it. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND you read this book this year.
  • Living Sacrifice: Willing to Be Whittled as an Arrow by Helen Roseveare, Helen was a medical missionary in Zaire many years ago, her books chronicle her daily encounters and her spiritual journey whether believing God for a hot water bottle to save the life of a tiny newborn baby, or believing God for the clay they needed to build hospitals.
  • Living Faith: A Journey toward faith that dares to prove the faithfulness of God by Helen Roseveare( Just began this one)

Rather than try and wrap my brain around all I have read by writing book reviews, I will include some snippets from the pages. As you can read in What Will it Cost? I feel God is moving me away from “comfortable Christianity” and breaking my heart for what breaks His. Am I following Him “even when it doesn’t make sense?” Nik Ripken

Nik Ripken has walked with followers of Christ from the hills of Kentucky to war-torn Somalia. Faced with suffering in his own family, the realities of war around him, and the systemic destruction of the work he felt called to do, the evil was at times overwhelming. How could God be goo, when life was so dark? How could Christ reign victorious on a day when the number of martyrs included some of Nik’s best friends? Is there really power in Christ no matter the circumstances.

Nik Ripken is the world’s leading expert on the persecuted church in Muslim contexts. He is a missions veteran of twenty-five years. He, along with his wife, has done extensive research on the persecuted church, mostly on Muslim background believers. (Both quotes taken off the back of the book)

The book Follow Me by David Platt is one I’m going to need to read again. It is my husband’s copy, he said I had to get my own. It is a convicting and challenging book, and I’m still digesting it. 

The road that leads to heaven is risky, lonely, and costly in this world…following Jesus involves losing my life-finding a new life in Christ. –David Platt

And this today in my daily devotional by Nancy Leigh DeMoss

The problem is that we are prone to seek pleasure in things and people that cannot ultimately satisfy the deep longings in our hearts. For our hearts can never be truly satisfied with less than Him. God wants to give us(me) ‘a path of life’ , ‘fullness of joy’, and ‘pleasures forevermore.'(Psalm 16:11) Joy in Christ that He alone can offer.

So you see, God is up to something in my life. Yes, most of what I’m reading is radical for our western culture, but the picture of what it looks like to follow Jesus is becoming quite clear.