Thursday, May 23, 2013

Letters from the Soul: This Month's Newsletter Column

(+ a new upcoming sermon series!  Also, on a blog programming note, I will be on vacation until June 2, so posts between now and then may vacillate between sporadic and non-existent.  Consider yourself warned!  -E.A.)

“School’s Out: Here’s a Summer Reading List!” 

Dear church,

 As always, I have been using part of this year to eagerly devour some new and exciting spiritual reading material, and like last June, I humbly offer to you three of my recommendations for books to keep you company during those lazy days of summer:

“My Year of Biblical Womanhood,” Rachel Held Evans, 2012
 I absolutely devoured this book when it first came out last year and am already combing through it all over again!  Evangelical Christian writer and blogger Rachel Held Evans documents, A.J. Jacobs-style, a year of her attempting to live out—as literally as possible—the Biblical commandments found specifically for women in passages like Proverbs 31, Titus 2, and Ephesians 5.  The result is a heartfelt and hilarious memoir—with contributions from her husband, Dan—that I have been unable to put down.

“Love Does,” Bob Goff, 2012
I got to see the Seattle-based Bob Goff speak here in Longview earlier this year (courtesy of the Three Rivers Christian School), and based on what I had learned from him in this book, he could not and did not disappoint.  In Love Does, he recounts a series of memories, stories, and anecdotes from his life, which range from childhood recounting to adventures in Uganda, liberating children from modern-day situations of slavery!  Read his stories and be inspired by the way God continues to work in our world!

“What We Talk About When We Talk About God,” Rob Bell, 2013
Rob Bell, the founding pastor of Mars Hill Bible Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, has been writing thought-provoking books for years—his 2005 debut, Velvet Elvis, has been the foundation of our monthly book study here—and his most recent effort is a thoughtful, reverent attempt to frame who and what God is in new and exciting ways.  Utilizing Scripture, experience, and theological (and even scientific) know-how, he tries to convey the sheer size and scope of God’s goodness and creative power, and he preaches a compelling message in doing so!

So those are some of the books that will be on my shelf this summer.  How about you?

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Eric

And brand-new for June: The “Behold a New Thing: The Tribal Church” Sermon Series:

June 2: “Saul’s Spears,” 1 Samuel 18:6-11

June 9: “The Year of Jubilee,” Leviticus 25:8-17

June 16: “We Were Slaves,” Deuteronomy 24:17-22

June 23: “When Children Ask,” Exodus 12:21-28

June 30: “The Wife of Lappidoth,” Judges 4:1-10

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