I love Reading, Nothing makes me happier than laying in grass with a good book in hand. You don’t really need friends just Great books to keep you company Ha.
This is not a complete list just a list of books that have had the greatest impact on my life in terms of growth emotionally, mentally and spiritually. I hope you are motivated to grab one of these and read for the Summer. I hope you realize just as I have that there is much to learn from books than the people we surround ourselves with sometimes.
Conquering the Dragon Within By: Marvin Moore (1995)
I had a hard time reading the title without bursting into laughter, I thought it sounded too serious sort of like the books that would be given to someone trying to recover from ‘real’ addiction. Truth be told, it has been the greatest eye opener in terms of understanding our nature and how to mitigate our inclinations of clinging to everything that God hates. It expands on the love of God and how vital it is to understand the love of God and the security it provides. So you can deal with character flaws without feeling like God dislikes you every time you fail to do what is right. It gives practical guidelines on how to overcome temptation through a relationship with Jesus Christ.
Messages to Young People By: Ellen G. White (1930)
Very Insightful, A friend of mine sent me a pdf of this book, if interested holla I will forward it to you. I am currently sill reading this, It is written in a form of a textbook with different chapters ranging from character development to destiny founded upon God’s plan for your life. What I am loving about this book the more I read it, is that as young people we are called to have a life that God is pleased with and it gives practical steps in growing within the body of Christ. I am learning that the challenges we face in our generation are not new at all, and God is faithful because he promises not to forsake us as long as we get up each time we fall.
Mere Christianity C.S Lewis 1952
This is hands down one of my all time favorite books depicting the different christian beliefs. C.S lewis talks about Christianity not as a religion built upon wrong doctrines that are often institutionalized within the church but as a relationship. The most important view of Christianity is one that acknowledges the relationship with Jesus as the most important foundation of the belief. If you struggle with questions about the church, its beliefs and God’s truth this is the book for you. It will help you uncover the truth about your belief systems, and at times challenge your own understanding about what it means to be a christian.
Waiting and Dating By: Myles Munroe 2004
Myles Munroe convinced me that waiting to date is not punishment but protection. Forget the Hype behind relationship goals etc based on the most vaguest aspects of a relationships. He emphasizes the importance of building your relationship with your father before trying to disturb someone else’s life by taking them on a roller coaster of emotions. This happens only because you are still immature and refuse to take the time to grow up and realize that relationships should reflect the love of God and How can we truly talk about love without first and foremost relating it to God’s love.If you are stuck feeling like you have been single for too long bla bla bla, don’t sweat it try reading this book maybe it can help you change your perspective.
Pink Lips and Empty Hearts By; Heather Lindsey (2012)
It is a very memorable book, about Heather’s journey, her different experiences growing up and how each had such an impact on how she identified herself in the world. She talks about the importance of honoring God in a relationship. Understanding that self control and self disciple are vital to sustaining a marriage. If we don’t learn how to practice self control, how to choose God above all our desires how do we expect to master any of these in the context of a marriage. Habits don’t just go away it takes practice and more and more practice. Boundaries and standards are meant to protect you from everyone who does not rise up to meet each. This book taught me that I will never lose if I choose to follow God’s standard in any relationship.
Without Rival By: Lisa Bevere 2016
Comparisons are very real and they rob you of your joy yet it is very difficult to let them go. Lisa shares stories about her journey and her struggles in truly dealing with comparisons especially with other women. She addresses the issue of identity and how if we fail to root our identity in who Christ is, we can easily find ourselves being lured into comparison games that breed nothing but jealousy and envy. She shares that the biggest misunderstanding is that God loves his children equally, rather than uniquely. She finds that each one of us are unique with different sets of abilities and strengths and so comparing yourself to someone else is a disservice to who you are.
The Alchemist Paulo coelho 1988
Almost everyone that I’ve encountered has had a chance to read at least one of Coelho’s books. This was my first read by him. The story captures the journey of a young shepherd through a dessert, he sets out to find gold and he gains so much more than the riches he went out for. It takes about love more specifically the idea of freedom in love and the way God uses all his creation to help you reach your dreams. Most importantly it taught me that sometimes what we think we want based on what we’ve seen around us isn’t always true.
Eleven Minutes Paulo Coelho 2003
A bit controversial, but if you are open minded enough to understand other people’s experiences well this is one of my favorites. It looks at a young Brazilian woman’s journey from her home to the city. It shows how naive she had been about life in the city, and how she ends up accepting a life far beneath her potential only because she couldn’t let go of the idea of ‘making it’. My favorite character thus far because she is not afraid to admit that she was wrong about life, love, dreams and sex. A woman who resorted to using sex in order to survive (at least that’s the story she had told herself). It is a great read that helps you in the least sense empathize with the different choices that other people make.
The Kite Runner Khaled Hossein 2003
I don’t usually tear up in real life situations but Hossein’s books had me deep in my feelings and I can barely let go of the story days after finishing the book. He is that good. Two friends who grow within different environments, and form a bond that survives within religions and political tensions. It shows how we are shaped by our environments and as much as we think that we will act better than our parents had we been placed in the same situations , most times we become the exact same people we despise. It’ is hard sometimes to build your identity without making peace with the mistakes you make when younger. To own each and every choice you’ve made regardless of the consequences that arises out of admitting your faults.
A thousand Splendind suns Khaled Hossein 2007
Hossein is such a compelling story teller you will definitely tear up when reading this one. It is a story about survival within a country that was being overtaken by violence especially towards women. A story about resilience and the power of friendship. It has taught me that even in the most hopeless situations where you feel like you have absolutely nothing more to give, the awareness that you are still alive gives you a sense of purpose greater than your circumstances.
1984 George Orwell 1949
1984 is very interesting, was published in 1949 and it depicts what the world would like if it was governed by Utopian ideals. A world that could grant you perfect happiness, by indulging in anything you had the perfect story to convince yourself. our world is better because we have distorted anything that is supposed to be natural like pain and suffering. Thus by avoiding it you are led to believe in an idea of happiness outside the parameters of pain and suffering and this is not realistic. The best way to control any society is to make them believe that any one opposing their ideas is an enemy as a result those who hold power can only do so by convincing you that their way is the only right way.
Animal Farm – George Orwell 1945
Another great read about human nature however it is told using a parable that analyzed the power dynamics within the animal kingdom. It conveys the ideas of inequality, revolution and power. Orwell explains the limitations of each thought anyone has ever come up with when talking about inequalities and injustices. According to wikipedia the book was written out of his disdain of Stalin’s rule in Russia. My favorite quote which is very contradicting is “”All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others”. This explains our world better than anything I’ve yet to read.
Sula- Toni Morrison 1973
A story about friendship which is centered upon the different stages that friendship goes through and the need to forgive easily. Sula is my favorite character but she is very (shady) but if you hate her too soon then you can’t even begin to understand that as she grew older she couldn’t identity herself outside of the realities of her childhood home. While her best friend had limited herself by following what everyone else had done as a result she could not form a thought that was ever truly her own.
The Zahir – Paulo Coelho
A story about a man who seems to have it all but really having nothing. A journey about him finding what is important in life after his wife leaves him to become a war journalist in Afghanistan. It is a journey about accepting the lies we tell ourselves on what success entails and truly admitting that we have all accepted a way of life without ever questioning how relevant it is to our own perceptions on what life is. It shows that we give up more when we chase things, that are only just things but our entire world is built upon them as a result it’s hard to let them go.
Americanah Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie 2013
A love story not the conventional types but very Messy. At the end of the book I was a bit torn because I wanted to not like the main characters because of the decision they made towards the end and how it came into conflict with my own beliefs. Anyways It is a great book written about an African woman’s experience in a western country and the agony in realizing that sometimes you will say yes to certain situations that are far beneath you only because of the story you have chosen to believe. Nothing compares to home no matter how hard we try to run away in search of something better.
Life After God- 1984
Different stories about our downfall when we try to have a life outside of God’s will. My favorite story is 1000 years which is written about friend who sets out to find the meaning faith. He finds that a life lived outside of God’s will is utterly useless.
Autobiography of Malcolm X :Alex Haley 1965
My first ever autobiography book, and it was amazing. What I love most about Malcolm X and his journey in terms of his Islamic faith is his willingness to let go of his ideas in which he had grown to learn were wrong. In humility he was able to admit that at times he was wrong even if his ideas had made perfect sense in each context that had given birth to each. His ability to view the human race as one as opposed to being divided after holding those ideals for years and really speaking his truth unfiltered is the most admirable.
My beautiful Idol By; Pete Gall 2008
An advertising agent who seems to have it all, gives it all up to pursue his desire to know God for himself (Currently reading )
Brave New World – Adolph Huxley 1932
Read this for an English class in high school Hated it . Came back to to a couple of years later I grew to love it. Story is set within a dystopian world where humans are conditioned upon birth to fit within different societal rankings. With use of a drug soma, no one feels any form of suffering, thus everyone is led to blindly accept that they are living their best lives. Huxley focuses on two characters who begin to question their existence within this world and they realize the importance of having the ability to feel pain in order to truly be human it’s all part of the circle of life.
I Am Malala :How One Girl Stood Up for Education and Changed the World 2014
A very remarkable story about a young girl who survives through the worst circumstances and lives to fight injustices in her country. Her story is driven by her belief that girls deserve the right to an education. And Yes if you are as soft as I am, you will definitely cry and start understanding that life isn’t worth living until you find something you are willing to die for.
I hope you find something that you would consider reading this summer. If you have any suggestions Comment below 🙂