Here you will find additional resources that might challenge, provoke, encourage, and enlarge…

for sunday, january 6, 2019

Here are some general resources on prayer:

Letters to Malcom (Chiefly On Prayer) by C.S. Lewis. Lewis uses correspondence to an imaginary Malcom to reflect on prayer… thoughtful and freeing…

Prayer by Ole Hallesby is a classic on prayer written by a Norwegian pastor who played a leading role in the church’s opposition to the Nazis and was confined to a concentration camp for two years. He is Norway’s Dietrich Bonhoeffer.

Two Classics by Jack Hayford: Prayer is Invading the Impossible presents insights gleaned from the Lord’s Prayer and The Secrets of Intercessory Prayer. Dallas Willard said of “Secrets”: ''My best advice is to get this book and put it into practice.''

Hearing God by Dallas Willard is also a classic. Willard was professor of Philosophy at USC till his death in 2013. This book reminds us that prayer is not a monologue but a conversation… along the way he addresses themes of how to listen, the promise of God’s guidance, the role of obedience in tuning our hearts to God’s voice and not as a reward for our faithfulness.

When God Doesn't Answer Your Prayer: Insights to Keep You Praying with Greater Faith and Deeper Hope by Jerry Sittser is one of the best books on this subject. Sittser would pray for the protection of his family but one evening a policeman appeared at his door informing him that his mother and wife were killed in a car accident and that one of his daughter’s was critically injured. For the next several days he watched her in agony before eventually passing away. Where was God? Why did his daughter have to suffer? How could he ever trust God again? Let someone who has experienced the horror of unanswered prayer speak…

for sunday, january 13, 2019

The Girl In the Orange Dress: Searching for a father who does not fail. Margot Starbuck's story begins with a woman looking for her biological father. But it doesn't end when she finds him. Instead, his rejection punctures her soul and sends her on a different search--one that leads to a different Father. This Father did not just "sacrifice a son" like the parents she knew, but instead gave his own life out of love for her.

My Father's Tears: The Cross and the Father's Love by Mark Stibbs. Mark Stibbe explores the Father's agony at seeing his son in pain; the son suffering the Father's absence, and the Holy Spirit as the bond of love between the two, holding them in an eternal embrace. The author relates this to the orphan condition of separation and shame he has known personally in his own life. He suggests that in the excruciating picture of the grieving Father and the abandoned Son, we paradoxically discover the exhilarating Good News: that our true identity is as the adopted, much-loved children of a God who longs to honour and heal us.

for sunday, january 20, 2019

Surprised by Hope by NT Wright. In Surprised by Hope: Rethinking Heaven, the Resurrection, and the Mission of the Church, Anglican bishop, N.T. Wright tackles the biblical question of what happens after we die and shows how most Christians get it wrong. We do not “go to” heaven; we are resurrected and heaven comes down to earth--a difference that makes all of the difference to how we live on earth.

Martin Luther King’s Letter From A Birmingham Jail: One of the most significant “modern epistles” that expresses faith in Jesus, a dynamic vision of the Church, and a clear and cogent moral vision. This letter remains a portent mixture of grace and prophetic exhortation…

for sunday, january 27, 2019

Knowing God by J. I. Packer is a modern Christian classic on the attributes of God… this book will enlarge your understanding of God and inspire your faith. Ultimately, the goal of this book is not to know more about God, but to know God. This was one of the first books I (Mark) read when I came to faith in Jesus Christ.

The Knowledge of the Holy by A. W. Tozer is a much thinner book but equally weighty. A journey through these two books will be instrumental to your spiritual growth. This book shows us how we can rejuvenate our prayer life, meditate more reverently, understand God more deeply, and experience God’s presence in our daily lives.


The Kingdom of God is one of the most dynamic themes in the Scriptures. Jesus’s entire ministry in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke can be summed up in the sentence, “Repent and believe for the Kingdom of God is at hand.” Here are some books that will introduce you to a Kingdom understanding and perspective.

The Gospel of the Kingdom by George Eldon Ladd is a book that changed my life. This book is a practical and devotional scriptural study of the many aspects of the kingdom, based on the parables, the Sermon on the Mount, and other key passages. This is the best introduction that I (Mark) know to recommend.

FOR SUNDAy, March 10, 2019

Forgiving As We Have Been Forgiven describes how churches and communities can cultivate the habits that make forgiveness possible on a daily basis. Following the Rwandan genocide, Musekura lost his father and other family members to revenge killings. But then he heard God tell him to forgive the killers. The healing power of forgiveness in his own life inspired him to work for forgiveness and reconciliation across Africa… What we learn is applicable throughout our lives… This is the tough road of forgiveness with “skin on it”.

Free of Charge: Giving and Forgiving in a Culture Stripped of Grace by Miroslav Volf is a thoughtful exploration of forgiveness. This book is an introduction to a Christian faith that practices forgiveness even when it is counterintuitive, painful, and sacrificial. This book is deeply personal and may be more practical than you’d like!

The New Freedom of Forgiveness explores the outrageous cost-and incomparable value-of forgiving. This book recognizes thatthis is a believer's only option. Any other course of action will not only be destructive, it will violate the will of God. This book contains a study guide to facilitate and apply forgiveness— not just the little stuff, the minor irritations and thoughtless behavior of others, but everything.

For Sunday, March 17, 2019

Man’s Search For Meaning, by Holocaust survivor, Victor Frankl, may be the most influential book on my life next to the Bible.” (Mark) This book is part memoir, part philosophy, and part training manual for life from a man who suffered the loss of his parents, brother, and his pregnant wife in the Nazi death camps. While at times sobering, this is far from a depressing book. Through his own experiences and those he counseled later, he shows us that we cannot avoid suffering but we can learn to cope, find meaning, and move forward with renewed strength and personal sense of purpose.