This year, I set a goal to read 36 books. I love to read, but my life really seemed to accelerate over the past year, and I didn’t do nearly as much reading as I generally do. Because of that, I decided to set a manageable goal of three books per month. With the start of a new year, I chose books to get me excited about clearing my schedule, cleaning up the clutter, and focusing on my relationship with Christ.
I have a ton on my Kindle that I’ve gotten for free or have purchased for a dollar or two, so I wanted to start reading some of those. Here are five I’m working on this month.
1) Several friends have recommended The Fringe Hours by Jessica N. Turner. I haven’t really followed her blog, and I’m not quite sure what I might glean from this–or if it will even be relevant for me. I do have a tendency to put everyone else first and burn-out, so I hope to get some practical tips!
For the woman who is doing everything for everyone–except herself
Ever get to the end of the day and realize you did nothing for you? In this practical and liberating book, Jessica N. Turner empowers you to take back the fringe hours–those little pockets of time you already have in your day–in order to make time for your passions and practice self-care. Based on original research, The Fringe Hours helps you overcome common hurdles that prevent women from taking time for themselves regularly. You’ll also discover tips for maximizing the time you have and discover how living this lifestyle makes you a better wife, mother, and friend.
2) I long for simplicity, but I’m just not always good at it. I was in a really good place, and then a whole lot of life happened…and things exploded. I’m hoping Simply Tuesday by Emily P. Freeman will renew my resolve to simplify.
Is your soul being held hostage by hustle?
If you’ve grown weary of do more and dream bigger, small-moment living is just what you need. Real life happens in the small moments we find on the most ordinary day of the week. Tuesday holds secrets we can’t see in a hurry–secrets not just for our schedules but for our souls. In Simply Tuesday, Emily P. Freeman shows you how to
· embrace today’s work
· find contentment in the now
· replace competition with connection
· learn to breathe in a breathless world
It’s time to release our obsession with building a life, and believe in the life Christ is building within us–one simple Tuesday at a time.
We all yearn to look back to find we lived a life of significance. But is it even possible anymore? Considering the amount of distraction and pressure that exists in society today, living a fulfilling life may seem like an unachievable dream. But it is not—not with the nine habits outlined in this book.
New York Times bestselling author and widely known blogger, Rachel Macy Stafford, reveals nine habits that help you focus on investing in the most significant parts of your life. As your hands, heart, and eyes become open, you will experience a new sense of urgency—an urgency to live, love, dream, connect, create, forgive, and flourish despite the distractions of our culture.
4) At a church staff meeting, our worship leader recommended this book. I wasn’t familiar with it at all, but I’ve started Not a Fan by Kyle Idleman. It’s been fairly convicting so far.
Pastor Kyle Idleman doesn’t just want to be a fan of Jesus, he wants to full heartedly commit to him and be a follower of Jesus. But how can you make the leap from fan to follower? In Not a Fan Idleman uses biblical examples to show how the people who met Jesus also had to decide if they were fans or followers, and what it meant for them to then become followers. Being a follower doesn’t mean that you go to church every week, that you slap a Jesus fish on the back of your car, and that you give to charity. That’s what a fan does. What a follower of Jesus does, Idleman observes, is die to themselves each and every moment of the day because “you can’t say yes to following Jesus unless you say no to living for yourself.” In this three part book Idleman helps you to discover whether you are a fan or a follower, how to recognize the invitation Jesus has given, and what following Jesus looks like in your daily life.
5) This is a book I started before reading Marie Kondo’s Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, and then….well, I forgot about it. Yeah. Probably should weed out the books on my Kindle. Anyway, The Joy of Less by Francine Jay has a ton of practical advice and motivational ideas to get me started on decluttering again. Somehow with kids, new stuff always seems to show up….
Do you ever feel overwhelmed, instead of overjoyed, by all your possessions? Do you secretly wish a gale force wind would blow the clutter from your home? If so, it’s time to simplify your life!
The Joy of Less is a fun, lighthearted guide to minimalist living. Part One provides an inspirational pep talk on the joys and rewards of paring down. Part Two presents the STREAMLINE method: ten easy steps to rid your house of clutter. Part Three goes room by room, outlining specific ways to tackle each one. Part Four helps you trim your to-do list and free up your time, and explains how saving space in your closets can save the planet.
Ready to sweep away the clutter? Just open this book, and you’ll be on your way to a simpler, more streamlined, and more serene life.
Do you have any book recommendations for me for February?