1. The Divergent Series by Veronica Roth
Y'all. It is no secret that I enjoy a good post-apocalyptic YA novel. The Divergent series delivers. If you're behind the times and want a well-written series that will keep you turning pages past midnight, pick these books up. Now.
2. Rhinestone Jesus: Saying Yes to God When Sparkly, Safe Faith is No Longer Enough by Kristen Welch
I read this book while in Uganda, not knowing that one month later I would be on a plane to Kenya. This book moved me to tears and inspired me. Kristen writes of how her faith is shaken, tested, and fortified as she and her family do what some call crazy and impossible to love the women of Kenya.
3. A God-Sized Love Story: Beautiful Redemption From Beginning to End by Gretchen Saffles
I've mentioned Gretchen several times here on the blog, but I am continually blown away by the purity of her heart for the Lord and her genuine desire to love Him more and make Him more. She encourages me in ways she doesn't even know about, and I am privileged to call her friend. Her story of finding love is sweet and breathes life to those who are weary and waiting.
4. A Million Little Ways: Uncover the Art You Were Made to Live by Emily Freeman
My friend Rachel and I had the privilege of meeting Emily in October when we traveled to North Carolina for the day At the Barn, and it was such a sweet joy. Her book calls out the artist in all of us, awakening us to live out the art that we were made to create with the gifts that God has given each one of us.
5. Notes from a Blue Bike: The Art of Living Intentionally in a Chaotic World by Tsh Oxenreider
For years now, the Lord has been whispering one word over me: simplify. There are so many things wrapped up in that little word, and this book speaks to every area of our lives, challenging us to examine the way we live and question the reasons behind the seemingly insignificant decisions we make.
6. Jesus Feminist: An Invitation to Revisit the Bible's View of Women by Sarah Bessey
I picked up this book thinking I would hate it, but instead found myself weeping. Sarah's words are incredibly stirring and beautiful, causing you to examine your heart and life in the light of Scripture and think through your beliefs on why we do what we do within the church. Amazing work.
7. Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling
This book y'all. Hilarious. So much laughter. A must-read.
8. Bridge to Haven by Francine Rivers
Redeeming Love is one of my favorite books of all time. Y'all, Francine Rivers can weave a story. The way that she uses historical contexts to bring to life stories to encourage, inspire and move her readers is amazing.
9. Let's All Be Brave: Living Life with Everything You Have by Annie Downs
This book came at such a perfect time for me last fall. My friend Rachel and I read through it together, and it was such a great catalyst that called out the bravery in each of us. I highly recommend it for those who want the courage to do brave things that seem impossible and scary.
10. Wonder by R.J. Palacio
So technically this a children's book, but it is such a wonderful read. I read it back in the spring in one day, and a couple weeks ago finished reading it aloud to my second graders. This book is incredibly well-written and gives an insight into the mind of an "ordinary kid with an extraordinary face." It will make you laugh, cry, and cheer. A definite must-read.