August
18
Author
Iain Kennedy
Books We Recommend: Iain

The summer always catches me out. I count down the days to lots of barbecues, summer projects round the house and lounging on the beach with good books. But it seems to disappear much more quickly than it came and as it nears its end I’ve not done nearly enough of any of that. I have managed to get through a few of the books I planned to read and I’d like to recommend those that have done me good. Here they are...


“Liturgy of The Ordinary” by Tish Harrison Warren


As much as I enjoy reading about life’s big themes, I find it hard to find books that make the relevancy leap from there to everyday monotonous tasks. This little book does it brilliantly. It has helped me to see how the little things I do actually matter, from replying to emails and how often I check my smartphone to brushing my teeth and sitting in traffic jams.

I felt invited into Warren’s struggle to find meaning in the things we’ve been trained to consider as ‘necessary evils’ and discover the glory of doing the little things that tend to dominate our days.

I discovered this book through a [fuller] Andrew Wilson Think Theology blog that you can find here. If you hear me moaning about I.T. problems in the office just point me back to this book.


“I Am So Many Things” by Thea Muir


You could read this book in 5 to 10 minutes, but I think it should be read over a lifetime. I certainly plan for our family to always have it nearby.

This coffee table style book took shape through Muir’s time with God in His Word. As she went through Scripture she began to write down some of the truths she was discovering about her identity in God and then would take time illustrating them in pencil drawings. The result is a book full of beautiful double-page spreads to remind us of our gospel identities.

A really good friend of ours gave us this to help us declare gospel truth to Annabel as she grows up, but both Lyndsay and I have already found it such a stunning reminder for us sat in our front room.

You can buy it and learn more about these “seeds to plant in your heart” at iamsomanythings.com


“The Unquenchable Flame” by Michael Reeves


This year marks 500 years since the beginning of the Protestant Reformation, a movement that has brought grace and freedom to millions upon millions of people since. Its implications were huge, but you may find that you’re not really sure why it was so important and just how God used these men and women to change the course of history. This little book by Michael Reeves is a great place to start.

I was recommended it when I was on a Bible teaching course a number of years ago and was struck by the courageous faith of nuns and priests on the run. They found themselves convinced that all people could know the truth for themselves, know God personally as well as communally and be free from sin and guilt now. BBut, if they were going to reach the world with this good news, they had to face up to one of the most powerful and crushing institutions the world has ever seen. They had to be willing to pay with their lives.

It’s a stunning story of redemption and its legacy includes me, you and Gateway. That’s why we are beginning a five-part series in the autumn about the biblical convictions at the heart of one of the most remarkable revolutions to ever take place. For a little more depth on the same subject try “Why The Reformation Still Matters” by Michael Reeves and Tim Chester.