No-matter-how-busy-youI love reading and spend time with my head in a book every day without fail.

I take my trusty kindle with me wherever I go and set myself specific reading goals that have made a massive difference in my personal and spiritual development over the past few years.

In 2014, I have read some great books on a range of subjects and I want to give you my top 10 in the hope that you will benefit from them as well:

10.  Preaching and Preachers, by Martin Lloyd-Jones – This book was recommended to me a few years ago, so I was delighted when I found that it was available on Kindle.  It’s based on a series of lectures that Dr Lloyd-Jones delivered in 1969, so it’s a bit old-fashioned, but most of the points here are still relevant and as a speaker who loves preaching in churches, I got a lot out of this book.

9.  The Faith of Leap, by Michael Frost and Alan Hirsch – I heard Alan speak on this subject at my church early in the year, so it was nice to read the background work behind his message.  This book is a terrific encouragement to live the daring adventure that we were made for and is a challenging, prophetic call to churches everywhere.  If I had read this when I was a pastor, I suspect that this book would have ranked higher as much of the content is relevant to church leaders.  If that’s you, I dare you to read this book!

8.  Write. Publish. Repeat. by Sean Platt, Johnny B. Truant and David Wright – This is a book about the process of writing and self-publishing books, a subject that I’m very interested in.  It’s a practical and motivating, giving some terrific insights into the process of making a living from writing.

7.  The Tiger: A True Story of Vengeance and Survival, by John Vaillant – I bought this book for myself last Christmas and loved it from the first page.  Based on a true story about a rogue tiger in remote Siberia, it’s part history, part adventure, part zoological research piece, this was a great read.

6.  On Writing, by Stephen King – One of the books that was quoted on multiple occasions in Write. Publish. Repeat. was Stephen King’s On Writing.  I’m not necessarily a fan of King’s genre, but I admire his incredible body of work, so I read this book with eagerness in the hope that it would help me as a writer.  Part autobiography, part teaching manual, if you want to be a writer, you have to read this book.

5.  Greater, by Steven Furtick – With quotes like, “The thing is, most believers aren’t in imminent danger of ruining their lives. They’re facing a danger that’s far greater: wasting them” you know that this book is right up my alley.  In this book, Furtick takes us through the biblical prophet Elisha’s life in an inspiring manner that I found very helpful

4.  The Hoops Whisperer, by Idan Ravin – I stumbled upon this book through my Twitter feed and was immediately intrigued.  I love basketball, so when I heard about this 5’11” Jewish lawyer who never played pro basketball and is the personal coach of guys like LeBron James, Steph Curry, Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony and Kevin Durant, I had to get it.  This is a great book that isn’t just for sports fans, with some terrific insights and applications that go beyond the game of basketball.

3.  Unstoppable, by Christine Caine – I must admit, for some reason I didn’t have huge expectations of this book, but it came up in my recommendations and I was intrigued.  So I bought it and wow, I’m glad that I did.  Christine is a powerful communicator who inspires her readers to live the life they were made for.  Her work in tackling sex slavery is phenomenal and I absolutely loved this book.

2.  Facing Leviathan, by Mark Sayers – I admit, I’m slightly biased with this one, as Mark is an old friend whom I grew up with, but this is a phenomenal book that is wonderfully crafted and very well researched.  Mark is simultaneously vulnerable, culturally relevant and extraordinarily insightful as he walks through the biblical story of Jonah and its relevance to church life and faith.

1.  The Happiness of Pursuit, by Chris Guillebeau – I’ve long been a fan of Chris’s blog and his earlier book, The $100 Startup is one that I recommend to anyone wanting to start their own business.  In the Happiness of Pursuit, Chris talks about pursuing quests that can give our lives meaning, purpose and a sense of adventure, using modern examples of normal, every day people who have challenged themselves to achieve remarkable deeds.  I love Chris’s storytelling style and this book is no exception, making it my number one book of the year, although it was a close call.

There you have it, my 10 favourite books of 2014.

Do you have any other books from this year that you would recommend?

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