What to Read: Our Staff Picks
Now that you’ve finished up all the Netflix series that you had only made it halfway through, you might want to think about getting back to that ancient practice of intellectual and soul development: reading.
Not sure what to read? We asked our team from around the country what they are reading right now. Here are a few of their answers—your Man in the Mirror Self-Quarantine Reading List!
The Red Sea Rules by Robert J. Morgan
Recommended by Dave Armstrong, Area Director for Greater Philadelphia:
Just as Moses and the Israelites found themselves caught between “the devil and the deep Red Sea,” so are we sometimes overwhelmed by life’s problems. But God delivered the Israelites, and He will deliver us, too.
Using the Israelites’ story as an example, Morgan in The Red Sea Rules offers ten sound strategies for moving from fear to faith. Among them: Realize that God means for you to be where you are. Acknowledge your enemy, but keep your eyes on the Lord. Pray.
Emotionally Healthy Spirituality Day by Day: A 40-Day Journey by Peter Scazzero
Recommended by Jamie Turco, Director of Communications:
It’s challenging finding time to read with both of us working from home, doing schoolwork with our oldest, and running after our toddler. That’s why this devotional is perfect for those in our shoes right now.
Twice a day, I slip out to the porch for 15 minutes to pray, reflect, and read the Word. God is using each of these short devotionals to speak directly to me during this trying time and stir my mind and heart, while also helping me carve out a much-needed moment of rest and peace.
Heroism: An Everyday Person’s Guide to Anything-But-Normal Living by Eric Ludy
Recommended by Kelly Danilson, Area Director, Iowa:
My teen son and I just went through Heroism together. This was a great time of challenging us both to think about how great God is and what part we each can play as Christians. God used this book in my life just after a major trial.
I love what Eric says on page 28: “You want to change the world? Become an apprentice of Jesus Christ.” What a great way for dads to connect with their boys or mature man to disciple a growing man.
Leading at The Edge: Leadership Lessons from the Extraordinary Saga of Shackleton’s Antarctic Expedition by Dennis Perkins
Recommended by Ronn Read, Field Team Chaplain:
This true account is one of the most incredible stories of leadership and resilience in modern history. Ernest Shackleton led an expedition* to Antarctica in 1914 on the ship, Endurance. When their ship was crushed between two ice floes, they attempted a near-impossible journey over 850 miles of the South Atlantic’s heaviest seas to the closest outpost of civilization. Leading at the Edge reveals what we can learn today from their team about bringing order to chaos through true leadership.
*We also highly recommend Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage by Alfred Lansing.
Got Your Back: Helping Christian Men Forge the Brotherhood Connections They Need by Gary Yagel
Recommended by Jim Boetjer, Area Director, Idaho:
The author makes a compelling biblical case that God never intended Christian men to fight their spiritual battles alone. He appeals to men’s core need for fellowship—first with God and then each other. Got Your Back full of biblical examples, real-life stories, and practical wisdom to inspire men to forge the brotherhood bonds we need for encouragement and accountability. This book lends itself well to reading with a group of guys and gathering on a video conference to discuss each week.
The Trouble with Jesus by Joseph M. Stowell
Recommended by Chris Rondeau, Area Director, South Carolina:
Stowell writes about how post 9/11, Americans clung to Patriotism and other pagan beliefs for truth and security. People were looking for answers, but strangely, for many, Jesus wasn’t the answer. What happened? As followers of Christ we are called to be Salt and Light and be distinctly different that the “other gods.” This book explains the “problem” of being a Jesus follower.
The Trouble with Jesus also explains the opportunity! We are to be different, serve different, go to places others won’t, and reach out to those in need. COVID-19 is this generation’s 9/11. This book can help you think about how we as Christians should respond in the months ahead.
The Christian Man: A Conversation About the 10 Issues Men Say Matter Most by Patrick Morley
Recommended by all of us!
After 34 years of teaching, 21 books, and countless articles and private conversations, Pat Morley has written the magnum opus of men’s discipleship. To compose the book, Pat sat with a group of younger men to determine what issues mattered most to them. Ten areas bubbled to the top, and Pat wrote a chapter on each one comprised of lessons learned from his vast experience.
BONUS: The Christian Man Coaching Guide is available as a free download. With short lessons on each chapter, two men or a small group can go back through the book and use the guide to create an action plan for your life—either over the phone or on a video conference.
Short Takes on Audiobooks
Here are a few recommendations from Man in the Mirror President & CEO Brett Clemmer’s audio library:
The Abolition of Man, C.S. Lewis, read by Douglas Gresham, Lewis’ grandson! A short book that uncovers the weaknesses of relativism.
The New Testament in Its World, N.T. Wright and Michael Bird. Learn about the historical context of the New Testament and the culture that Jesus was a part of.
Leadership and Self-Deception, The Arbinger Institute. When a friend of mine asked on Facebook, “What’s the best leadership book you’ve read?” this book dominated the answers. It is great as an audiobook because it is told in story form.
Whether you prefer to read or listen, keep nurturing your mind and soul with good books! And if you can bring a few guys along with you over video, even better! As Pat Morley says:THE BIG IDEA: Sometimes a man will get hold of a book, and God uses the book to get hold of the man.Click To Tweet
Got a book recommendation?
Leave it in the comments below!