It’s time once again for the Official Annual Danny Franks Recommended Book Reading List for Summer, or O.A.D.F.R.B.R.L.(f)S., for short. If you fancy yourself a good beach read and are looking for something slightly more intriguing than a medical textbook and slightly less lascivious than Danielle Steele, I’m your guy. Here are my top seven picks that ought to be in your canvas book bag this year…
- The Beautiful Fight, Gary Thomas. The author of Sacred Marriage is back with a great book on pursuing holiness in our everyday lives. If you’ve never read any of Gary’s stuff, this is a good place to start. I reviewed it here.
- A Praying Life: Connecting with God in a Distracting World, Paul Miller. I’m about to pass a church-wide law, complete with punishment for the disobedient, that everyone should read this book (you’ll remember we talked about it quite a bit back in December). You say, “A book on prayer sounds boring with a capital BO.” I say you’re full of beans and need to repent. Read it…good stuff.
- The Pursuit of Holiness, Jerry Bridges. Bridges takes us on a journey to discover that personal holiness is not simply the responsibility of the Holy Spirit, it’s our responsibility as well. It’s a short little book that will help you rethink personal disciplines. Plus you feel wicked smart after reading a book with a title like that.
- The Church of Facebook: How the Hyperconnected are Redefining Community, Jesse Rice. A genius book that takes a look at the role of social media in the life of modern spirituality. (I personally am hoping for a follow up called The Church of Twitter, but whatev.) I reviewed it here.
- Less Clutter, Less Noise: Beyond Bulletins, Brochures, and Bake Sales, Kem Meyer. If you’re a pastor or a staff member or a communicator of any sort, you should skip – not walk – to the nearest bookstore and pick this one up. Kem nails the communication gap of what we say vs. how we make people feel. This one kinda set off a spiritual watershed for me a few months back.
- Influencer: The Power to Change Anything, Kerry Patterson et al. I just finished this book a couple of weeks ago. The think tank authors weave incredible stories of social experiments into the real world of how we can leverage change in our own lives and the lives of those we lead.
- Sticky Teams, Larry Osborne. Possibly my favorite book on leadership in the last two years. Larry is the pastor of North Coast Church in California, and the book is full of decades of wisdom on leading your board, your staff, and your volunteers. If you get one, buy an extra copy for me…I spilled Goo Gone on mine and it disappeared.
Now in full disclosure, seven is the number of perfection (I’m pretty sure that’s a Bible verse somewhere), but ten is the number of OCD, which I have. So what are the other three books you’d recommend? Comment below. (Overachievers can check out last year’s list as well.)
Coming tomorrow: my personal reading list for the summer.