Time well spent: some good reads

Updated: May 4, 2020

I grew up thinking that reading was just for leisure - so spending time in a book was wasting time if I could be doing other things. I couldn't have been more wrong!

Lockdown is a new phenomenon for most of us. Some of us have lots of time to fill we didn't have before, others are suddenly busier than ever juggling more than we ever thought possible! But whether we are crazy busy or desperately searching for find things to do, one of the hardest things can be staying focussed on the things that really matter. What better way to re-centre your thoughts than by finding a few minutes each day to spend in a good book. Here are some of our favourites...

Books for when you are short of time...

Prone to Wander by Natalie Brand

The biggest danger for every believer is drift - it is so easy to just wander off.

We are distracted by our everyday comings and goings and before we know it we have wandered away from our good shepherd and find ourselves in danger.

Now is a good time to press the reset button, be honest about our drifting and our feeble attempts at following Jesus well. The best news is - our good shepherd never left us!

Each chapter takes around 10 minutes to read but will keep feeding your heart for much longer. Highly recommended.

available from 10ofThose.com

5 Things to Pray for your Kids

by Melissa Kruger

This is a short book, that helps to raise your thoughts above the pressures of family life and provides ideas to inspire you to pray for the spiritual things that matter for your kids. It is easy to read and really focusses the mind on the key things to pray for.

As a parent it can feel overwhelming thinking what to pray for and I am never sure where to start, particularly in the current climate of everyone being at home.

This provides you with 5 key things to pray about. Pray through a set of five things together, use them as a prayer for each weekday or just dip in or out. I have found it useful as short prayer for every weekday. Linked to the five prayer points, the author also provides a passage from the Bible to refer to. Some examples of the areas for prayer include:

  • ‘praying that God will save my child’

  • ‘praying that my child will prayerfully seek God’

  • ‘praying that I will create a home of patience and kindness’

  • ‘praying when my child is experiencing change’

Parents are often are carried along with the worlds demands upon their children in terms of academia, sport, hobbies and friendships. I have found these short prayers so useful to focus my mind on my kids’ brokenness in this world and their need for Jesus as their own personal Saviour. I hope you enjoy this little book too!

editor's note: also helpful for grandparents, aunts, uncles and youth leaders - why not pray for the parents in your church family, or try another book from the series and pray for your church, the world or the people that you love.

available here

The Freedom of Self-Forgetfulness

by Timothy Keller

This is an all-time favourite and has to be amongst the most recommended books of the past five years. It is an adaptation of a sermon preached by Tim Keller from a passage in 1 Corinthians 3:21-4:7.

Because it's basically a sermon in a book, it takes very little time to read, but packs a big punch of perspective for times when we over-reach ourselves, compare ourselves to others or just feel deflated.

Keller is direct and challenging, but the

struggle with pride is shared by all of us and we need to remind ourselves often that the gospel changes everything about us - I've re-read this several times!

Our struggles may be normal - but there is another way - and this book leaves the reader encouraged by a new perspective and ready to go on.

A book that every Christian should read! Available here