What I’ve been reading December 2018

This Christmas I had a number of books I wanted to read… I posted them here.  I read most of those books though I think one of them I couldn’t find where I put it.  I wanted to just continue my monthly post of what I read with a brief comment on each book.  If one of the books catches your eye I’d suggest grabbing it now so you have it next year when Advent/Christmas comes around.  Would love to have you leave a comment with what books you’ve been reading this season.

So here’s the books I read in December 2018:

Hidden Christmas by Tim Keller
I really like Tim Keller’s writing style and I also like the balance between readability and depth of theology he has in his writing.  This book looks through various parts of the Christmas story to re-examine it and help us get a fresh look at the Christmas narrative.  A solid read that I found nourishing for the soul, not to mention had my mind thinking about potential sermon series for Advent in the future.  I think this is a great read for anyone and is very accessible.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Christmas Sermons by Deitrich Bonhoeffer
Ever since reading his biography I’ve been meaning to read more of Bonhoeffer’s writings.  This collection of sermons spans his ministry including times imprisoned.  I found the tension of the world underlying the time in which he lived and ministered impacted and shaped his messages in ways that our Advent messages I believe lack.  Definitely a good read… however I must admit after reading two books of sermons this season, I’m not a huge ‘sermon reader’ – I’d rather hear it preached and read their reflections surrounding the sermon.

The Christmas Candle by Max Lucado
A delightful Christmas fiction story written by a wonderful story teller.

The Paperbag Christmas by Kevin Milne
I read this a few years ago and remembered enjoying it, so I thought it was time to revisit this Christmas story set in a children’s hospital.  It’s a wonderful read filled with humour but also a good message about what kind of gifts we really need to get.

Advent: The Once and Future Coming of Jesus Christ by Fleming Rutledge
I stumbled onto this book from facebook posts by my Old Testament professor from Seminary.   Rutledge shares sermons from throughout her ministry career that are from the advent season. The context of the sermons is recentering our Advent not on warm Christmas feelings, but more traditional themes of Advent.  I won’t spoil what they all are… grab the book and read it for that, but will say it resonates with my own view of Advent that it needs to not just recount history, but set our face forward to the future return of Christ the King.

Simple Discipleship. by Dana Allin
This is the one non-Christmas or Advent book that I read this month.  I was given a pre-release copy to review, and will be posting that review in the next day or two but in short – this is a fantastic book that challenges leaders and churches in how they do discipleship and also provides some opportunities  and ideas surrounding how we do discipleship.  I would say this is a must read if you’re interested in the topic of discipleship.