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Quite a Strange Reading List

Attending conferences and listening to people in ministry who are much more experienced than I am brings a consistent conclusion: Ministers need to keep themselves fed. Another fact that deserves plenty of attention is that in reality, we’re all called to minister in some way, even if it isn’t in our job description. This might be the strangest single collection of suggested books you’ll ever see, but give them a shot.

  • The Purple Cow, Seth Godin
    It’s too easy to be average. Our faith is one that asks us to give up ‘going with the flow’ and this is a fantastic and quick read on how run-of-the-mill is no fun. It’s also an excellent commentary on human behavior and the habits of consumers.
  • The Interior Castle, St. Theresa of Avila
    So you think you understand the soul? This is a great start at deepening your prayer life. Each read through will lend something new on the subjects of prayer, humility, temptation, grace, and sacred silence.
  • The Imitation of Christ, St. Thomas à Kempis
    This is (like The Interior Castle) one I need a life-jacket for. The best part about this ancient and highly regarded work is the call and challenge. All of us need it. 
  • Escape Adulthood, Jason Kotecki
    This may be one of the lesser known works on my strange list, but it’s a gem. It’s a reminder to be alive and not to take yourself to seriously.
  • Getting Things Done, David Allen
    Thinking about ministry again: all of us are busy. Too busy. The methods outlined in this book have done a tremendous job (along with a lot of prayer) making sure I’m productive but keeping me at peace when it’s time to rest.
  • Surefire Stress Busters, Gene Monterastelli
    Speaking of busy, an alarming amount of the health problems we deal with regularly are caused by stress. This book is full of ways to remove stress from our daily lives. 
  • Psalm 31
    My Old Testament pick for ministers is Psalm 31. Read it often. We love to tell people how they need to trust in God while we’re ministering to him, but rarely take our own advice to make Him our Rock of Safety.
  • Matthew
    I wanted to pick a Synoptic Gospel for the list because, let’s face it: the life of Jesus is immeasurably important. Matthew happens to be what I’m reading right now.

What are you already reading that has fed you in a profound way? I know I’m missing entire libraries from this list – but I had to start somewhere.

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