I love to read, and I know that many of you do as well. There are several books scheduled to be published by the end of this year and into 2017 that I am looking forward to. Here are several of them:
The Better Pastor – Patrick Lencioni
This book was just published August 16. From Amazon “As he approached the door to the sacristy, Fr. Daniel Connor had no idea that his parish and his priesthood was about to be changed forever.
THE BETTER PASTOR is a fictional yet realistic story, lovingly written for all those priests in the world who are not only spiritual shepherds but also leaders of the organizations we call parishes. Being the pastor of a Catholic parish is one of the most challenging jobs in the world. Whether they are responsible for a small rural parish, medium-sized urban one, or large suburban mega- parish, all pastors have one thing in common: they can’t do it alone. Unfortunately, many wonderful priests find that becoming a pastor can be overwhelming and lonely, and can even diminish the joy of their vocation. This is a tragedy, and an unnecessary one. In his first book intended specifically for clergy, Patrick Lencioni tells the story of a priest who is challenged to think differently about his job. As he does in his other leadership fables written for the secular world, Lencioni quickly cuts to the heart of the challenge faced by leaders, and he provokes them to embrace simple but powerful concepts that can change the way they work and serve the people God has put in their lives.”
This short book will be published August 31. From Amazon “Missionary biographies often inspire enthusiasm, zeal, and urgency for missions among God’s people. But how do Christians give their lives to missions if they feel called to remain in their homeland? In 1792, British pastor Andrew Fuller formed the Baptist Missionary Society, an organization dedicated to the promotion of mission work both at home and overseas. In this concise biography, best-selling author John Piper introduces readers to this incredible Christian who—although he never served abroad himself—inspired the modern missionary movement that gave rise to such figures as William Carey and Hudson Taylor. Working tirelessly to raise funds for missionaries in the field and championing the importance of sound doctrine for fruitfulness in missions, Fuller stands as an example to all Christians eager to devote themselves to knowing, guarding, and spreading the true gospel of Jesus Christ to the ends of the earth.”
Making Sense of God: An Invitation to the Skeptical – Tim Keller
This book will be published September 20. From Amazon “In this thoughtful and inspiring new book, pastor and New York Times bestselling author Timothy Keller invites skeptics to consider that Christianity is more relevant now than ever. As human beings, we cannot live without meaning, satisfaction, freedom, identity, justice, and hope. Christianity provides us with unsurpassed resources to meet these needs. Written for both the ardent believer and the skeptic, Making Sense of God shines a light on the profound value and importance of Christianity in our lives.”
Born to Run – Bruce Springsteen
This book will be published September 27. From Amazon “In 2009, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band performed at the Super Bowl’s halftime show. The experience was so exhilarating that Bruce decided to write about it. That’s how this extraordinary autobiography began.
Over the past seven years, Bruce Springsteen has privately devoted himself to writing the story of his life, bringing to these pages the same honesty, humor, and originality found in his songs.
He describes growing up Catholic in Freehold, New Jersey, amid the poetry, danger, and darkness that fueled his imagination, leading up to the moment he refers to as “The Big Bang”: seeing Elvis Presley’s debut on The Ed Sullivan Show. He vividly recounts his relentless drive to become a musician, his early days as a bar band king in Asbury Park, and the rise of the E Street Band. With disarming candor, he also tells for the first time the story of the personal struggles that inspired his best work, and shows us why the song “Born to Run” reveals more than we previously realized.
Born to Run will be revelatory for anyone who has ever enjoyed Bruce Springsteen, but this book is much more than a legendary rock star’s memoir. This is a book for workers and dreamers, parents and children, lovers and loners, artists, freaks, or anyone who has ever wanted to be baptized in the holy river of rock and roll.
Rarely has a performer told his own story with such force and sweep. Like many of his songs (“Thunder Road,” “Badlands,” “Darkness on the Edge of Town,” “The River,” “Born in the U.S.A,” “The Rising,” and “The Ghost of Tom Joad,” to name just a few), Bruce Springsteen’s autobiography is written with the lyricism of a singular songwriter and the wisdom of a man who has thought deeply about his experiences.”
Why The Reformation Still Matters – Michael Reeves and Tim Chester.
This book will be published September 30. From Amazon “Five hundred years after the beginning of the Protestant Reformation, many people—Christians and non-Christians alike—view it as a conflict about issues that are no longer relevant to the church. But what if the Reformation still has something to teach us? What if the doctrines so vigorously debated and defended by the Reformers still matter today? In this accessible primer on the Reformation, Michael Reeves and Tim Chester introduce readers to eleven key questions raised by the Reformers. These questions continue to impact the church today—proving that the Reformation is much more than just a bit of history we can leave behind.”
This book will be published October 1. From Amazon “Christmas is a great time to give a non-Christian friend or church visitor a short book getting to the heart of what it’s truly all about. This is perfect for giving out at church events, or with a present.
Music is everywhere at Christmas chart-toppers, carols, children’s tunes… Alistair Begg takes us to four songs that were sung by people at the very first Christmas (and his favorite carol).
In this short, winsome book a teenage girl, a respected priest, a group of angels and an old man bring readers to the heart of Christmas, showing them the joy and peace that comes from meeting a baby who lay in the food trough and changed eternity.”
Faith and Work Bible – General Editor David Kim
This book will be published October 4. From Amazon “Combining doctrine, Scripture application and real-life experiences, the NIV Faith and Work Bible will help you answer the question “How does my faith relate to my work?” It doesn’t matter what job or career you have—part-time, third shift or freelance; from the shop floor, to the school hallways, to the corner office; this Bible will reveal how relevant God’s Word is to your daily work life.
David H. Kim is the Pastor of Faith and Work at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City. He is also Executive Director of the Center for Faith and Work.”
This book will be published October 4. From Amazon “Is real friendship too risky?
We live in a world where real friendship is hard to find. Suspicious of others and insecure about ourselves, we retreat into the safety of our small, self-made worlds. Now more than ever, it’s easy to avoid people with whom we disagree or whose life experiences don’t mirror our own. Safe among like-minded peers and digital “friends,” we really don’t have to engage with those who can challenge and enhance our limited perspectives. Tragically, even the church can become a place that minimizes diversity and reinforces isolation.
Jesus models a much richer vision of friendship. Scott Sauls, pastor and teacher, invites you to see the breadth of Christ’s love in this book, BeFriend. Join Scott on this journey through twenty-one meditations to inspire actively pursuing God’s love through expanding your circle of friends.
Scott has met too many people whose first impulse is to fence off their lives with relational barriers that only end up starving their own souls.
Yes, it’s true: Real friendship is costly. Love does make us vulnerable. But without risk, our lives will remain impoverished.
Join Scott in BeFriend as he summons you toward diverse friendship that can enrich your life and, in the process, reveal a better version of yourself.”
I Am Brian Wilson: A Memoir – Brian Wilson
This book will be published October 11. From Amazon “They say there are no second acts in American lives, and third acts are almost unheard of. That’s part of what makes Brian Wilson’s story so astonishing.
As a co-founding member of the Beach Boys in the 1960s, Wilson created some of the most groundbreaking and timeless popular music ever recorded. With intricate harmonies, symphonic structures, and wide-eyed lyrics that explored life’s most transcendent joys and deepest sorrows, songs like “In My Room,” “God Only Knows,” and “Good Vibrations” forever expanded the possibilities of pop songwriting. Derailed in the 1970s by mental illness, drug use, and the shifting fortunes of the band, Wilson came back again and again over the next few decades, surviving and—finally—thriving. Now, for the first time, he weighs in on the sources of his creative inspiration and on his struggles, the exhilarating highs and the debilitating lows.
I Am Brian Wilson reveals as never before the man who fought his way back to stability and creative relevance, who became a mesmerizing live artist, who forced himself to reckon with his own complex legacy, and completed Smile, the legendary unfinished Beach Boys record that had become synonymous with both his genius and its destabilization. Today Brian Wilson is older, calmer, and filled with perspective and forgiveness. Whether he’s talking about his childhood, his bandmates, or his own inner demons, Wilson’s story, told in his own voice and in his own way, unforgettably illuminates the man behind the music, working through the turbulence and discord to achieve, at last, a new harmony.”
This book will be published October 25. From Amazon “In his new book Timothy Keller takes readers on an illuminating journey into the surprising background of the Nativity. By understanding the message of hope and salvation within the Bible’s account of Jesus’s birth, readers will experience the redeeming power of God’s grace in a meaningful and deeper way.”
This book will be published October 31. From Amazon “Confusion about the nature of God’s grace can easily lead to an unhealthy concern about the security of our salvation on the one hand or the belief that we don’t need to strive for holiness on the other. Do we know the real meaning of grace as described in Scripture? In this gentle and compassionate book, Pastor Bryan Chapell explains how grace not only frees us from sin, but also serves as fuel for the Christian life. By explaining why grace is important and helping us to see evidence of God’s grace in all of Scripture, Chapell shows us the transformation that occurs when God’s grace produces gratitude within us, leading to heartfelt obedience.”
Below are books that I’m looking forward to, but won’t be published until 2017:
Jesus among Secular Gods: The Countercultural Claims of Christ – Ravi Zacharias and Vince Vitale
This book will be published January 3, 2017. From Amazon “The rise of these secular gods presents the most serious challenge to the absolute claims of Christ since the founding of Christianity itself. The Christian worldview has not only been devalued and dismissed by modern culture, but its believers openly ridiculed as irrelevant. In JESUS AMONG SECULAR GODS, apologetic scholars Ravi Zacharias and Vince Vitale challenge the popular “isms” of the day, skillfully pointing out the fallacies in their claims and presenting compelling evidence for revealed absolute truth as found in the Bible. This book is fresh, insightful, and important and will provide readers with valuable help in articulating why they believe that Jesus is who He said He is.”
No Limits: Blow the CAP Off Your Capacity – John Maxwell
This book will be published March 7, 2017. From Amazon “We often treat the word capacity as if it were a natural law of limitation. Unfortunately, most of us are much more comfortable defining what we perceive is off limits rather than what’s possible. Could it be that many people have allowed what they perceive as capacity to define them? Have they allowed their perception to limit their attitudes about their potential?
In his newest book, John Maxwell identifies 17 core capacities. Some of these are abilities we all already possess, such as energy, creativity and leadership. Others are aspects of our lives controlled by our choices, like our attitudes, character, and intentionality. Maxwell examines each of these 17 capacities, and provides clear and actionable advice on how you can increase your potential in each. He will guide you on how to identify, grow, and apply your critical capacities to your daily life. Once you’ve blown the “cap” off your capacities, you’ll find yourself more successful–and fulfilled–in your daily life.”
Leaders Made Here: Building a Leadership Culture – Mark Miller
This book will be published March 13, 2017. From Amazon “The most important attribute high-performing organizations have in common is that they are well led. Every organization dreams of having enough leaders. Yet too many organizations take a haphazard or inconsistent approach to leadership development. The result is a dearth of leaders and a failure to leverage the full capacity of the enterprise.
Leadership guru and Chick-fil-A executive Mark Miller describes how any organization can create a culture in which leaders are routinely and systematically developed, resulting in a surplus of leaders. Miller details how to nurture leaders throughout the organization, from the front lines to the executive ranks. He provides a game plan for organizations to create a deep leadership bench.
To help bring the ideas to life, Miller uses the story of Charles, a new executive, as he and his team discover best practices from around the world to ensure a continuous supply of capable leaders. Charles and his team then translate their findings into a practical plan that any organization can use to create a leadership culture that will assure a sustainable competitive advantage and long-term success.”
Reset: Living a Grace-Paced Life in a Burnout Culture. David Murray
This book will be published March 31, 2017. From Amazon “Largely due to overwork and the stresses of modern life, men in work and ministry are increasingly run-down, anxious, and depressed. But is this level of physical and spiritual weariness inevitable? Just as a car needs to be regularly refueled, retuned, and repaired in order to keep running, a balanced life can be sustained only when a man takes proper steps to stay on track. In this hopeful book, experienced pastor and counselor David Murray shares stories from his own life and the lives of friends, offering gospel-centered advice for avoiding, assessing, and recovering from burnout. With chapters on rest, relationships, routines, and more, this book lays out a host of practical remedies men can use to reset their lives on a more sustainable course—resulting in renewed energy, joy, and purpose.”
This book will not be published until April 4, 2017, but it certainly is worth looking forward to. From Amazon “The apostle Paul penned a number of important passages in his letters to the early church that summarize the gospel message in just a few well-chosen words. Each of these key texts has a unique emphasis highlighting some essential aspect of the Good News. The chapters in this remarkable new book closely examine those vital gospel texts, one verse at a time. John MacArthur, host of the popular media ministry Grace to You, president of The Master’s College and Seminary, and longtime pastor at Grace Community Church, tackles such questions as: What is the gospel? What are the essential elements of the message? How can we be certain we have it right? And how should Christians be proclaiming the Good News to the world? As always, the answers John MacArthur gives are clear, compelling, well-reasoned, easy to grasp, and above all, thoroughly biblical. The Gospel According to Paul, which follows in the tradition of MacArthur’s bestsellers The Gospel According to Jesus and The Gospel According to the Apostles, is written in a style that is easily accessible to lay people, including those who know very little about the Bible, while being of great value to seasoned pastors and experienced ministers. It explains the rich and complete gospel preached by Paul and its perfect harmony with the teachings of our Lord and the writers of the New Testament.”
This book will be published April 11, 2017. From Amazon “Human beings are a paradox. On the one hand, we are utterly unique in the universe. Every human being is amazing, a creature who bears the image of God, who is fearfully and wonderfully made. We should never, therefore, think too poorly of ourselves. On the other hand, each of us is just one of seven billion other people on the planet. The sun doesn’t rise or fall on us, the universe doesn’t revolve around us, and every other one of those other seven billion people also bears the image of God. So each of us should never think too highly of ourselves. What makes us amazing is the same thing that makes every other human being amazing. What makes us incredible, in other words, is what makes us normal. We are made by God, we image God, we are loved by God, and we can be saved by God. The reality of this is that we can be freed up not to create an incredible identity or become incredible. Instead we can walk in the incredible way we were made to live.”
One Minute Mentoring: How to Find and Work With a Mentor-And Why You’ll Benefit from Being One – Ken Blanchard and Claire Diaz-Ortiz.
This book will be published May 2, 2017. From Amazon “The bestselling co-author of the legendary The One Minute Manager® and a former Twitter executive join forces to create the ultimate guide to creating powerful mentoring relationships.
While most people agree that having a mentor is a good thing, they don’t know how to find one or use one. And despite widespread approval for the idea of being a mentor, most people don’t think they have the time or skills to do so.
Positive mentoring relationships can change the way we lead and help us succeed. In One Minute Mentoring, legendary management guru Ken Blanchard and Claire Diaz-Ortiz, a former Twitter executive and early employee, combine their knowledge to provide a systematic approach to intergenerational mentoring, giving readers great insight into the power and influence of mentoring and encouraging them to pursue their own mentoring relationships.
Using his classic parable format, Blanchard explains why developing effective communication and relationships across generations can be a tremendous opportunity for companies and individuals alike. One Minute Mentoring is the go-to source for learning why mentoring is the secret ingredient to professional and personal success.”
This book will be published May 2, 2017. From Amazon “Many people with great, world-changing ideas aren’t able to make them happen. Most people are trying to make a difference where they are, yet they feel overwhelmed, overloaded, and far too busy. How do you get “unstuck”—without resorting to complex systems that take more time to keep up than they actually save?
Unstuck answers this question by introducing readers to eight core principles that are at the heart of becoming an effective person for the glory of God. These principles are flexible enough for people to adapt and apply them to their own life and context. Also included is a plan for getting started in using these principles and applying them to real life.
This book is more than just good ideas that you read and never apply. Unstuck walks you step-by-step through the core principles that free you to be more effective in everything you do. How can we learn the discipline of personal effectiveness? Starting with the Scriptures and drawing on the best research Unstuck shows Christians how to live integrated lives. True effectiveness is doing something in God’s way and for God’s glory, and this book will show you how.”