Fall Book Preview 2019

20190912_1912308059462925875403666.jpgAs the calendar has turned over from August to September and students have returned to school, publishers have released a number of new titles, and a stack of those (as you can see) have landed at our door. Obviously, I won’t read this stack in the next week. I have a day job (actually two), but that doesn’t mean I can’t give you a quick preview of these. Some, you may want to read before I get to reviewing them. Others, you will want to be on the lookout for my review. So here’s the list.

a life of listening

A Life of ListeningLeighton Ford. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2019. Leighton Ford has spent a lifetime of speaking for God as an evangelist, but also a life of listening to God, and to emerging leaders. This is his personal account of that life.

Participating in Christ

Participating in ChristMichael J. Gorman. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2019. Gorman traces the idea of “participation” across the writings of Paul and its significance for the transformation of believers through Christ’s death and resurrection.

Holy Disunity

Holy Disunity: How What Separates Us Can Save UsLayton E. Williams. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2019. Williams makes the argument that it is not unity that we should seek, but engagement with those we differ with, and that this in the end will save us.


Faith for ExilesDavid Kinnaman & Mark Matlock. Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 2019. The authors, using Barna Research, identify the factors that distinguish those who sustain lives of faith from those who do not in a time when many are leaving the church.

Becoming an Ordinary Mystic

Becoming an Ordinary MysticAlbert Haase, OFM. Downers Grove: IVP/Formatio, 2019. We often feel like our ordinary lives are often spiritual failures. Haase offers the hope that we might become ordinary mystics in the sense of learning to respond to grace as we draw close to God.

The Awakening

The AwakeningFriedrich Zuendel. Walden, NY: Plough Publishing, 2000. This is an older book on the confrontation with evil Johann Christoph Blumhardt engaged when he gave pastoral care to a tormented woman; a story that teaches the reality of spiritual warfare.

Discover Joy in Work

Discover Joy in WorkShundrawn A. Thomas. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2019. A business executive shows how people can experience joy rather than frustration in their work.

Make Way for the Spirit

Make Way for the SpiritChristoph Friedrich Blumhardt. Walden, NY: Plough Publishing, 2019. The son of Johann Christoph Blumhardt discusses his theology of the Holy Spirit, and how it differs from his father’s, shaped by encounters like that in The Awakening (above).

My Life in the Cleveland Zoo

My Life in the Cleveland ZooAdam A Smith. Huron, OH: Drinian Press, 2014. This one was sent to me via a relative of the author. The author worked in the Cleveland Zoo as a tour train driver and eventually as a keeper in the Pachyderm building and offers a memoir of the changes he saw in zoos in the 1970’s ranging from an evolving idea of what a zoo should be to changes in the gender makeup of those who worked there. We used to live in Cleveland in the 1980’s and loved this zoo.

Revolution of Values

Revolution of ValuesJonathan Wilson-Hartgrove. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2019. This book argues that the common good, particularly of the marginalized, is a casualty of the religious culture wars and how a biblical faith upholds the value of all people.

Trinity without Hierarchy

Trinity Without HierarchyMichael F. Bird & Scott Harrower, editors. Grand Rapids: Kregel Academic, 2019. In response to complementarian theologians who support their position by arguing for the eternal subordination of the Son to the Father, the contributors (both egalitarians and complementarians) argue for a Trinity with no hierarchy of relations between the persons.

Divine Impassibility

Divine ImpassibilityRobert J. Matz and A. Chadwick Thornhill, editors. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2019. The book explores four positions on the question of whether God has emotions and experiences suffering and whether God changes.

You Throw Like a Girl

You Throw Like a GirlDon McPherson. Brooklyn: Akashic Books, 2019. A former NFL quarterback contends that we often raise boys not to be women rather than to be men, resulting in an unhealthy emotional development, and violence against women. He frames a new way of thinking and talking about being a man that leads to greater emotional wholeness.

The Liturgy of Creation

The Liturgy of CreationMichael LeFebvre. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2019. Looks at the Old Testament calendar including the week of creation through the lens of liturgy.

What you take with you

What You Take With YouTherese Greenwood. Edmonton, Alberta: University of Alberta Press, 2019. A personal account of the Fort McMurray fire in Canada, its impact on a community, the questions of what to take, what to leave, will we survive, and what does it mean to re-build?

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

Fearfully and WonderfullyDr. Paul Brand and Philip Yancey. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2019. Explores the wonders of the human body and the wonder to which our bodies point, of being creatures who image God.

into his presence

Into His Presence, Tim L. Anderson. Grand Rapids: Kregel Academic, 2019. Rather than mere sentiment or experience, the author proposes a theology of intimacy with God.

Except for one instance, the links are to the publishers, and you can learn much more about the books at their websites. I have my reading list for the fall. Perhaps you might find a few books here that you will want to pick up. If you do, I’d love to hear about it. Perhaps we can read together!

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