Friday, November 9, 2007

The inspirational edition

I haven't had a chance to read anything new and worthwile recently. I started Walter Moseley's Blonde Faith, but I haven't had enough time to really get into it. But so far, it's a good detective story. But everyone knows Walter Moseley is the king so I don't need to say more.

Since I haven't read anything new I've decided to just do a compilation of my favorite inspirational books. These books are a great source of encouragement. Use them anytime you face a challenge, feel down, or anytime you need to make an important decision and need some guidance.

Facing Your Giants by Max Lucado: This book uses the story of David and Goliath to demonstrate how we can navigate the everyday problems of life: Fear, disappointment, anger, grief, jealousy/envy, family conflict, God conflict, you name it. Lucado's a great teacher and in his humorous yet direct way he'll "tell you about yourself" as the old folks say. This book is only going to help you if you want to change and if you take it seriously, you WILL change! I like the study guide at the back of it for purposes of discussion with a Bible study group or book club.

Traveling Light by Max Lucado: This one's another gem. If you ever feel that the world is on your shoulder and you can't shake it, then something's WRONG. The sub-title of this book is "Releasing the Burdens You Were Never Intended to Bear." Lucado fleshes out something that Jesus taught several times. Cast your cares on Him! This book really freed me from a lot of negative thinking. I realized that I don't have to be a perfect this or perfect that, all while wearing a smile and four-inch heels. Whew! I could relax in my favorite green suede Pumas and jeans; let the work slide for one day, ignore the phone when negative people call, and just be happy to be alive, healthy and loved for that one moment.

A Love Worth Giving by Max Lucado: Yes, I love Max Lucado. This one's a little different from the two above. It's less self-help and more challenge. Do you know how to love? Do you know what real love looks, sounds, feels like? Whatever your answer, should read this book. You'll see how deficient human beings are in the ways we act on and think about love. Lucado's main source for this book is 1 Cor. 13. And if you've never spent time thinking about the kind of love described in that passage then chances are you don't really know what love is. I certainly didn't. Of course, this kind of love is impossible for human beings to achieve so you read this book and you think: "Hmm... Uh... Can't do that." But that's okay. The point is just how much God loves us and how much capacity we have to improve our relationships with the people we say we love.

This was fun. I'm anxious to start working on my next novel, which I've been informally researching for the last five months. I think it's going to be difficult to write but I'm looking forward to the challenge.

I'm working on a young adults novel, which is so fun and exciting! I've never written 12-year-old characters before so I'm really going all out. It's about half-way done and I hope to finish it by next spring. Actually, I have written 12-year-old characters before -- myself in my journal. And every time I read that thing, I think, I was quite the character at age 12. But that's a whole other story.

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