January is my favorite month for homemade soup, snow days, a good book, resetting priorities for personal growth, as well as major reorganizing of the “stuff”. It’s spitting ice every so often, and after Saturday’s 72º it feels like January again. It’s a dark, wintery evening; the soup’s on, and cornbread will go in the oven as soon as my black iron skillet is hot. If you’re not from the South, authentic cornbread is made in a cast iron skillet. Since I have a huge mess in my crafting room, I’m choosing to take a look at some books that I’ve referred to throughout my short history of posting.
Books on Grief
For many years I kept a basket of books in my bedroom that I regularly read and reread on grief recovery. I found some of them in my own search, and others were recommended.
- No More Words by Reeve Lindbergh
This book tells of the journey Reeve took with her mother as Anne Morrow Lindbergh declined in her abilities to speak in the last seventeen months of her life. It reads like a journal and this walk of heartache was able to speak to me.
- Lament for a Son by Nicholas Wolterstorff
- When There Are No Words by Charlie Walton
The ABSOLUTE best book to give to someone after they lose a family member. Each chapter deals with some critical stage or piece of the journey of grief. Charlie passed away, but his words remain true.
- Mourning into Dancing by Walter Wangerin, Jr.
I’ve quoted from this book several times; he writes about four different types of death but weaves stories that make it personal and insightful. He also provides unique advice for friends who minister to a griever.
Books for the Soul
I use the first three books in daily meditation and devotion; they each have entries that can be read each day of the year.
- Jesus Calling by Sarah Young —- Just started this in March of 2012 and truly benefit from each daily entry.
- My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers —- A favorite of mine for many years.
- A Year With C.S. Lewis Daily readings from His Classic Works —- short passages from 17 of his books.
- The Song of the Seed: A Monastic Way of Tending the Soul by Macrina Wiederker
- Seven Sacred Pauses: Living Mindfully Through the Hours of the Day by Macrina Wiederkehr
- Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh
- one thousand gifts by Ann Voskamp — life-changing book
- Naomi and her Daughters by Walter Wangerin, Jr. —- a great novel about Naomi from the book of Ruth. He gives an interesting way to look at this familiar story.
- A Lineage of Grace: Five stories of unlikely women who changed eternity by Francine Rivers — these are the five women listed in the lineage of Christ who could not be ore different!
- 7: an experimental mutiny against excess by Jen Hatmaker — fascinating, laugh-out-loud, convicting book
Books are some of my favorite things; no surprise to regular readers of this blog. This list is highly personal and selective; my copies are well-worn and highlighted. I’ve not mentioned THE Book because I assumed you would know the Bible is first on my list. While I’m thinking about habits and the new year, have you checked out The Romans Project? If there is not a picture and link to it on the right of my webpage, click on “Posts” on the web menu and it should show up. I’m memorizing three chapters in Romans, and this is so very manageable. Two verses a week. Even this 65 year old whose memory is not what it used to be can do this! Try the Scripture Typer — it really works!
- the gift of reading as one of my favorite joys in life.
- the gift of talented writers who provoke my thinking and challenge me to BE better
- the gift of story – before printed words, stories carried the memory and history of people
- the gift of hot soup and cornbread on a winter’s night
- the gift of our amazing mind that can memorize God’s words to keep them close to our hearts