Saturday, May 25, 2024

May Book Recommendations

Here are this month’s book recommendations. I hope you’ll be blessed by these! Please share about some of your favorite books in the comments.


Fiction – 

Sisterchicks Say Ooh La La by Robin Jones Gunn (KU)

Five years ago, I got to visit Paris. It was the fulfillment of a dream that was planted in my heart after reading this book many years before. Paris makes a wonderful setting for a light-hearted adventure for two childhood friends who reconnect later in life. As they experience unexpected joys and sidetracks, they learn more about themselves, each other, and God’s goodness. I recommend all the Sisterchicks books, and this one is a favorite!


Non-Fiction – 

Chasing Daylight by Erwin McManus (KU)

This book is packed with biblical wisdom and thought-provoking questions. There were so many powerful truths, that I ended up underlining several lines on almost every page! The chapters follow the story of Jonathan when he invited his armor-bearer to go with him against the Philistines. Even though it’s a relatively short story in Scripture, the author unpacks a lot of godly principles and wisdom from it. While this book isn’t “light” reading, there are personal stories and illustrations throughout that make the truths relatable for the reader. McManus’ writing always makes me think more deeply and see things from a different perspective. I felt encouraged, challenged, and inspired as I read this book. It’s the kind of book that’s worth rereading each year, it’s that good. I hope you’ll give it a try! 


Devotional – 

40 Days of Jesus Always – Joy in His Presence by Sarah Young (KU)

This devotional has 40 short readings. Each one is written as if Jesus was speaking to you directly. There are verses listed at the end of each devotional as the foundation for the daily reading. I found the topic of joy in His presence encouraging and uplifting. It’s good to be reminded in a conversational way of truths we know but can easily lose sight of. 


(KU – available in Kindle Unlimited)


Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Choose Joy Today

I bought this piece of décor several years ago after unearthing it in a clearance bin. I needed the reminder on it – Today I Choose Joy. Then I noticed how it was scratched, smudged and slightly dented. And that’s when I knew it was perfect for me. 

It’s easy to say, “Choose Joy” when life is going well and good things are happening. It’s much harder to remind ourselves or anyone else to choose joy when life is full of pain, suffering, heartache, and disappointments. What we want instead is sympathy, comfort, and deliverance. 

The wonder of our great Savior is that He offers all of that to us – plus joy. 

Joy comes from knowing Jesus. 

Joy comes from seeing Jesus in others.

Joy comes from receiving from Jesus.

Joy comes from trusting Jesus. 

Joy comes from partnering with Jesus.

Joy comes from worshipping Jesus.

Joy comes from being loved by Jesus. 


My belief is that anything that brings true joy in this life somehow finds its source in Jesus. 


When we have Jesus, we have the source of true joy. 


That’s why we can choose joy today, in spite of the scratches, smudges, and dents of life. We can choose to focus on Jesus, to receive from Him, to worship Him, to partner with Him, to trust Him – allowing His supernatural joy to shine in us and through us. 


There is so much we can’t control in our lives. But by the grace of God and the power of the Holy Spirit living in us, we can control our choices. We can choose joy. Today. Tomorrow. Each day as it comes. 


I hope this reminder was helpful for you today. Maybe you can send me a reminder once a while too, so we can both continue to choose joy. 





“In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy….” –1 Peter 1:6-8