I know there are books that I will read later that will top these by far, but for the moment these are my ultimate favorites!
I use the Amplified Version for reading and studying, and the KJV for memorization.
1. His Chosen Bride
by Jennifer Lamp
The resource for young women that discusses almost everything! Although written in a conversational tone by a fellow single woman, this is not a hip, teen-survival guide but a vision and a call to single young ladies to basically be…Rebelutionary! In the first chapter Jennifer writes, “Satan wants us to believe that we cannot really do anything effective for the Lord until we arrive at ‘real’ life, being an adult, married, having children, etc. Until then, we tend to think of this time as ‘our own time.’ There is a grave danger in this mindset however, for it means we have lost sight of the exciting opportunities right in front of us! The presence of this perspective comes as no surprise, as it is during this very time we can do some of the greatest damage to satan’s dark kingdom. Nothing would delight him more than for us to spend it frivolously for that which does not count.” The book goes through Proverbs 31 and addresses it as it relates to single women. Miss Lamp explains. “One day I was reading Proverbs 31 and suddenly I looked over to Isaiah 54 which states, “Thy Maker is thine husband…” I had always prayed I would be that wife of noble character if God ever called me to that place, but it had never occurred to me that I could be that wife even now, serving Him as my husband. I became excited as I read each verse seeing analogies that could be made for us as single women and thus the Lord laid this book upon my heart.” All she is saying here is for young women to follow Proverbs 31 now and where it references to a husband realize that there is great potential for us to do that unto the Lord. This makes since when you consider the verse, “…And the unmarried woman or girl is concerned and anxious about the matters of the Lord, how to be wholly separated and set apart in body and spirit; but the married woman has her cares [centered] in earthly affairs-how she may please her husband.”-1 Corinthians 7:34b, Amplified Version. This doesn’t mean that it is wrong to be in either state/season. It’s simply a fact that if you are single then you have more time and energy to focus completely on serving Lord. When you’re married and have children, you still serve the Lord through serving them but most of your time and energy is spent on them. Topics covered include: attitudes and submission, guy/girl relationships(she quotes Josh Harris and Elizabeth Elliot), ministry and missions, life’s purpose, goals, spiritual gifts, servant hood, outward appearance(modesty, clothes, makeup, etc., she presents a very balanced and Biblical view), making decisions, discipline, femininity, staying abreast to cultural, political and government issues in our nation, staying strong spiritually, emotionally, and physically, and more! At the end of each chapter are discussion questions, additional Bible passages to read, and recommended resources and books. Excellence and femininity are stressed in every area of this book. I believe His Chosen Bride is essential for every, ‘Rebelutionary Girl.’
2. World War I
by Richard Maybury
Part of the Uncle Eric series, Mr. Maybury explains the 10 deadly ideas that lead to war, the Spanish-American war, and of course WWI. If you’ve ever been confused about WWI (like I was) this is a great explanation written in an easy to read, conversational tone.
3. Puzzle of Ancient Man
by Donald Chittick, Ph. D
Dr. Chittick explains that God created man ready to build, invent, study, and create magnificent things. This exposition of the amazing progressions of the ancient world will fill in many of your mental gaps of history and make you furious that most books, documentaries, etc.(including Christian) don’t teach these truths.
4. God’s Smuggler
by Brother Andrew
The beautiful autobiography of a rebel turned saint, on fire for God. This Dutchman’s story showed me that no matter what your background is, God can use you in mighty ways and that God doesn’t always choose those who are prepared, but He prepares those he chooses. Corrie ten Boom was a good friend of Brother Andrew and it was through John and Elizabeth Sherrill working with him on this book that her story became more widely known and The Hiding Place was published. His ministry of distribution of Bibles to the persecuted Church continues today: http://www.opendoorsusa.org
5. Ten Peas in a Pod
by Arnold Pent III
The Pent family, consisting of Mr. and Mrs. Pent and eight children, traveled across North America in the 1960’s-1970’s ministering through music, dramatized scripture and preaching as a family. Arnold III, one of the eight children, kept a journal in his teen years and compiled and expounded on them to form this book. Living against the grain, the Pents home schooled when it was unheard of, had more than 2.5 children, ate whole-wheat and banned white sugar from their household. This humorous exposition of a large family showed me how a family can minister together.
6. The Hiding Place
by Corrie ten Boom
The amazing story of how Corrie ten Boom survived and ministered in the Nazi Concentration Camps of WWII. Her story made me check my complaining and learn to appreciate the Biblical foundations my parents have set before me. Another wonderful but lesser known book chronicling her family’s life before and after WWII is Father ten Boom.
7. So Help Me God
by Roy Moore
Roy Moore’s autobiography and explanation of the controversy and trials surrounding the Ten Commandments monument. We should all be thankful for such a Godly man! On a more personal note, it was neat to read about his life preceding Montgomery since I’m also originally from Gadsden and could relate to the people and places talked about in the book.
8. Story of the Trapp Family Singers
by Maria Trapp
The true story of the family from the Sound of Music. As usual the movie is nothing like the book!
9. The Happiest People on Earth
by Demos Shakarian
Have you figured out yet that I love autobiographies?!? This is the beautiful story of Demos Shakarian, who grew up in an Armenian community that immigrated to Los Angeles in the early 20th century. Demos Shakarian was the founder of the Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship International. This isn’t a successful business narrative however. It’s a history of the Armenian community and the personal spiritual lessons that Mr. Shakarian learned. It’s the history of how the Armenian community learned how to be and show others how to be…The Happiest People on Earth.
10. Love Letters from Cell 92
by Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Maria von Wedemeyer
This love story shows a more personal side of the German theologian, Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Engaged just a few months before Bonhoeffer was imprisoned, Dietrich and Maria portrayed how true love is so much more than fulfilled sensual desires. This is not an example of a completely Biblical romance; however, respect, 1 Corinthians 13 love, and endurance are clearly portrayed. This collection also gives a good background to German culture, society, religion, etc. before and during WWII. They never saw each other again outside prison walls but their story will live on.