Being a mom is hard work, that’s a no brainer, so what mom really has time to sit down and read a good book?! Not this one! But for some reason, during all of my pregnancies I couldn’t read enough. Any spare minute I had, I was reading. I think it drove Matt nuts when I was pregnant with Hudson, all I wanted to do was read, I must have read at least 7 or 8 books and he got little attention. That may not seem like a lot, but for a full time working pregnant mom and wife… THATS ALOT! I still enjoy reading but with a toddler, the only time I have is either in the morning before he wakes up or after he goes to sleep. And since he wakes up and goes to sleep when we do, that’s pretty much NEVER! 😉
Although I am dedicated to being buried in my bible daily (almost), I usually only have enough time to finish a small amount of scripture before there’s cereal spilled all over the floor and a naked toddler running around with the dog trying to lick his butt! I have recently got the itch to read a good book again (no I am NOT pregnant) and as I was scrolling through my nook, I realized I have read some great books! A lot of them have helped me in different areas of my life and I thought I would share some of them with you! Here are seven of my favorite books full of inspiration:
- Jesus>Religion– This book opened my eyes and mind to so much. Often times, we as Christians and just as humans, we tend to put God (and ourselves) in a box and think we ‘have’ to live this way, can’t listen to that music, need to follow those rules etc, and this book is great at pointing out that Jesus is so much bigger than that, and our salvation doesn’t come from our works or the ‘good’ things we do.
- It Starts With Food– Amazing. This book educated me on the food that I am consuming and how it’s effecting not just my weight, but my ENTIRE body, from my head to my toes. Everyone should read this book!
- Heaven Is a Breath Away– Grab a box of tissues and get ready to be buried in this book until you’re finished. It’s about two sisters and one amazing journey to Heaven and back; a woman’s experience meeting Jesus and her sister praying her back. One of the sisters was in a terrible car accident with her daughter, and their family was told that her organs were ready to be donated any time, as she had no signs of life off of life support. If you don’t understand, haven’t experienced, or maybe doubted the power of prayer, PLEASE READ THIS!
- Have a New Kid by Friday– Our close friends Kevin and Cindi Ray have gone through the teenager stuff right before us and we are so grateful that we can learn from their mistakes! Haha just kidding! But really, Kevin and Cindi have been great examples and role models for us on many things, including how to handle the teen years and keep boundaries set. They told us about this book and we are so thankful they did. It has helped us, and thousands of other parents, figure out how to reach our children in realistic ways, and communicate in a way that is effective. We refer back to this book OFTEN and it is helpful with kids of all ages, but they also have a book specifically for teens.
- The 5 Love Languages– If you’re looking for a book or some ways to help you understand your partner or spouse a little better, this is a FANTASTIC tool. You can do a little questionnaire that helps you and your spouse find out what your ‘love language’ is. It opened Matt and I to a new understanding of each other after we learned what our love languages are. I can’t promise less arguments, but I can promise it will help you to appreciate each others strengths and weaknesses in a healthy way. They also have one for kids and I HIGHLY recommend that one as well.
- His Needs Her Needs (Building an Affair Proof Marraige)– I have told many many single adults and couples about this book and have received mixed reviews on it. Depending on where you’re at in your relationship or life, this may not be an easy read, but I promise you it’s worth it. This book was given to me during my previous marriage and I don’t think that being married at 18 (divorced by 21), I would have really understood or even agreed with this book so packed away it went. One divorce and a few dysfunctional relationships later, I finally pulled out that book and wiped the dust off… It was the PERFECT TIMING! It really helped me understand the primitive needs of men and prepared me for my relationship with Matt before we even began. After we were married and while we were on our honeymoon, Matt was finally able to relax from work and read a good book. He chose this one and I was so thrilled! He read the entire thing before we got back from our trip. I had told him about it and how it was so helpful in understanding the fundamental and basic needs of men and women. His response to the book was better than I had expected and he was able to understand where I was coming from in so many different areas. This book has truly helped our marriage!
- BIBLE– It’s true that the Bible is LIVING. You can read the same story, verse, scripture, whatever you want to call it, and EVERY TIME it will speak to you in a different way. The Bible is not always easy to understand or read, I get lost in it often, so I highly recommend a Study Bible. Study bibles help break the Word down into ways that are more understanding and help us retain what we’ve read, by describing certain words and situations. They also have maps in them that show you where different things took place and it’s an incredible tool. I prefer the NASB (New American Standard Bible) version, because I believe that it is the most accurate translated version to the way the Bible was actually written (Hebrew and Greek). Kristen Schmucker has a fabulous website that sells journaling bibles (as well as many other fabulous finds). She sells the ESV- English Standard Version, which is a great translated version and an easier read. They are a great gift for someone else or a splurge for yourself, and what an incredible way to journey through the Bible. Taking notes, journaling, and then going back to those entries and seeing how God spoke to you during those scriptures is such a powerful and special experience.
I hope you get a chance to check some of these out and that they inspire you and your walk through life!