Top 2016 Reads

2016 was an interesting year was it not? As you look forward to cold winter nights, spring break, warm summer days, or some relaxing reading in the fall, I wanted to offer my favorite reads from this last year. I would love to hear your favorites as well. Obviously, the number one book I left out is the Bible. That is the best.  These books I chose based on a reading challenge I mentioned earlier. By suggesting these books I am not endorsing all the views of the authors, nor do I claim to be the best judge of these books. You may hate them. Feel free to ask me more about them any time.
  1. Martin Luther, by Martin Marty. This is the 500th Year Anniversary of his 95 Theses. This short biography of Martin Luther is well researched and written. It is engaging and informative.

  1. Precious Remedies Against Satan's Devices, by Thomas Brooks (1608-1678). This 17th Century Puritan offers some words that are clear today. I was impressed by his profundity and pith. He offers a great counter to the evil still at work in the world and flesh. For example, he writes, "We must love truth both shining and scorching"  and "Consider that sin is but a bitter sweet". This book is not long, but it is one you can take your time on it and enjoy. If you are looking for something more recent and biographical, try the next one on the list.

  1. Endurance, Shackleton's Incredible Voyage by Alfred Lansing. Ernest Shackleton left England in 1914 and took with him a handful of men to be the first to cross Antarctica by land. He traveled over 1,000 miles only to get his ship stuck in ice. The men did not have cell phones or communication devices. Their ships were nothing like the ones we have today. They had what they had, and it was not much. They were stuck in a desert of ice and water floating and hoping. This is the story of their miraculous survival. It is a gripping true tale and makes Michigan seem warm and life easy.

  1. Wright Brothers, by David McCullough. Anything you read by David McCullough is great. This book takes you to the skies and the dawn of airplanes. It is a joy to read and learn from history. The tenacious and creative spirit of these two bachelors has changed our world. You will learn from their strengths and weaknesses. This book is clean, true, and moving.

  1. Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley (1831). So I tried to read some books that I have never read but people read in school. One book I read was Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. This dark horror was really well written. It takes you into the darkness of humanity. The darkness can make you thankful for the light. I am amazed at the creativity of Shelly and the use of story. Fiction is worth reading because we get a peek at non-fiction from another perspective. 

5 & 4. A Bird a Girl and a Rescue by Chameleon a Boy and a Quest both by J. H. Mhyre. Thank you Dan and Suzanne for introducing me to these children’s books. They are delightful, surprising, and easy to read. I read one on our trip to Turkey Run State Park in Indiana to my children. We loved it. It was so hard to put down. An African adventure awaits you.

  1. Seeking Allah Finding Jesus: A Devout Muslim Encounters Christianity, by Nabeel Qureshi. This book I could not stop reading. Nabeel seeks the truth and at first, he is attempting to prove Christianity wrong. Then he seeks to prove Islam right. You are taken into his world and mind and introduced to Islam and bolstered in your faith. I highly encourage you to read this book this year.

  1. How Can I Be Sure I Am A Christian? By Donald Whitney. Like David McCullough, I would suggest you read anything by him. I have never been disappointed. I was asked by a Small Group leader about this topic and I had to admit I had never read a book on the subject. Then I read How Can I Be Sure I Am A Christian by Donald Whitney. It was short, insightful, helpful, and biblical. I would highly encourage you to check it out or have it in your library.  

1. Operation Thunderbolt: Flight 139 and the Raid on Entebbe Airport, the Most Audacious Hostage Rescue Mission in History, by Saul David. So you probably want to read something that will keep you on the edge of your seat sometime in the future. Here it is. You may never have heard of flight 139 or Operation Thunderbolt but you won't forget it once you read it. The story is totally true. I was riveted by every chapter. This was my favorite book this year besides God's Word. 
So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God - 1 Corinthians 10:31.
Enjoy 2017 & God, Pastor Rob


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