12 Months, 12 Books

I have a new goal for this calendar year: Read 12 books in 12 months!

I’m already off to a great start. I finally finished “Mere Christianity1 in January when I was in Haiti (although that doesn’t count because I started it in 2009.

When I was in Haiti, I also read:

In the last month, I also finished reading:

And now I’m in the middle of:

As long as I can finish by the end of the month, I’ll be on track. Here’s what I think is up next (in no particular order):

That still leaves me one book short of the twelve I want to read, which is not for lack of having a list. I want to keep at least one spot deliberately open so I can choose something excellent as I discover new books.

The types of books I’ve listed above are the types of book I generally like to read. Based on that, what books would you recommend I look into?

In the meantime, I’m going to leave you with this excellent bit from Hustling God2 that I’ve been reflecting on lately:

When I wake up in the morning, I can jump in the shower, grab a cup of coffee, and rush off to work to be productive. Inevitably that will destine me to a day of running. Like Jacob, I will either be running to make something happen, or running away because it didn’t happen as it was supposed to. But if sometime in the morning I become still with prayer and the words of God, then it will occur to me that all of the important things have already been accomplished today. The sun came up and the earth stayed on its axis without any help from me. The Psalms remind me of that. I have awakened to a world I did not create to receive a salvation I did not earn. The Gospels make that clear every time I read them. And I need that reminder, because there are so many temptations in the course of the day to be my own savior, which is always, always, a temptation to hurry in the wrong direction.


  1. An excellent, although somewhat dense, book. I recommend reading it, although take your time; it took me the better part of 6 months. 

  2. Page 64 

14 Replies to “12 Months, 12 Books”

  1. Hmm… do you have relationships on the mind???

    Mere Christianity, I thought, was amazing! How was the 5 love languages? I’ve been interested in that book…

    Which reminds me, C.S. also has a book called The Four Loves, which I started reading after Mere Christianity- but never got through…. because it was lame or anything- just lack of time during school.

    Anyway, let me know how the rest of the books go πŸ™‚

    1. @Kimmi: The 5 Love Languages is decent book. It’s definitely written for couples, but singles can also learn from it and the entire premise really applies to all types of relationships.

      And yes, you could say relationships are on my mind.

  2. If we’re being competitive, I think I’m winning with number of books read this year, but that’s probably because I’ve been trapped in a hotel room for most of it :).

    If I were to make a suggestion, I would say anything by Donald Miller. I’m currently reading his most recent book, “A Million Miles in a Thousand Years”, and I’ve been devouring it. I enjoy his down-to-earth wisdom and just common sense on living life.

    1. @Ben: I might get sent to Oklahoma. It’s just a rumor for now, so we’ll see what happens. If so, maybe we should make this a contest. Although I probably wouldn’t be there for that long, probably less than a week.

      About Donald Miller. I have had a copy of Blue Like Jazz since freshman year of university, I think FCA or Cru was handing them out. I have yet to read it though. Is it any good?

      1. Pffft. A week? I do that in my sleep . . . in Maryland.

        As for “Blue Like Jazz”, it’s a good book to get introduced to the author (got my copy from Cru in college as well), but for my money I’d go with “Through the Painted Desert” or “A Million Miles in a Thousand Years” because they’re more on living life than “Blue Like Jazz” (and for that matter “Searching for God Knows What”) are. The latter two are good for understanding his perspective of theology, but being the adventerous person I am, the former two just clicked with me on a more personal level.

  3. Oooh yeah, I agree with Ben! I love Donald Miller! Plus he’s from Portland so he always includes fun little local tid-bits. Good choice! πŸ™‚

  4. 1) i concur with Ben. Donald Miller is the awesome.

    2) if you’re going to do the strengthsfinder, i recommend reading Living Your Strengths instead of Strengths Finder 2.0. Its the same test, but LYS gives it to you with a Biblical basis. Also, when you do, let me know what your strengths are. I absolutely love this test, and like knowing what my friends are!

    1. @Margaret: Hmm…why wouldn’t I publicly admit reading dating books? I mean, let’s face it: I’m an enginerd. I excel at awkward. And I don’t think there’s any shame in saying: I don’t know how to do this, but I’m going to find out (and perhaps also asking for help).

  5. I loved loved loved blue like jazz. the introduction is one of my favorite quotes ever:

    “I never liked jazz music because jazz music doesn’t resolve. But I was outside the Bagdad Theater in Portland one night when I saw a man playing the saxophone. I stood there for fifteen minutes, and he never opened his eyes. After that I liked jazz music. Sometimes you have to watch somebody love something before you can love it yourself. It is as if they are showing you the way. I used to not like God because God didn’t resolve. But that was before any of this happened.”

    Ahhh soo good! πŸ™‚

    I think the other reason I liked it so much was because of how he wrote, he wasn’t pretentious like so many other Christian authors.

    And to your last comment… I hope all goes well with the relationships on your mind!

  6. Pingback: Summer Reads. «

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