Happy Saturday, loves!!
So, we’ve made it to the weekend. What better way to celebrate than adding a ton of new books to your reading list?
I’m the type of person who will read like mad for a month, and then read nothing for 6 months. And that’s not a good thing:( On top of that, I must really be into a book to actually finish it. But I always have a running list of books I’d like to read at some point.
This past month or so has been filled with nothing but good books that I have to share!!
As Catholic women, our reading choices are truly a sacred space. The authors of our age are amazing. It seems like more and more Catholic women are coming forward to play their part every day. We have speakers, mothers, teens, athletes, missionaries, and more. The church is literally bursting at the seems as these ladies share their wisdom. And what a beautiful thing to watch.
Today, I want to share with you 8 books that have dramatically changed the way that I think and interact. The women that have written these books are legendary role models shining with the joy of Christ. They aren’t afraid to share their struggles and pains. And they are standing as witnesses of the love and mercy of Christ.
Left to Tell | Immaculee Ilibagiza
For years, I almost feared picking this book up. For one, I had a feeling it would go places I didn’t mentally want to go. Immaculee was the young college girl, a native of Rwanda, who had spent 3 months in a small bathroom, hiding from the Rwandan Holocaust. And that sounded terrifying. However, when I finally mustered the courage to read it, I could not put it down. Immaculee went through so much, living through purgatory, and more, here on earth. But even with her struggles, she came out with the same inspiring nature she had had at the onset. She lived through those long months in a state of complete meditation, trusting fully on the power and mercy of God. And that is not a terrifying idea.
Story of a Soul | St. Therese of Lisieux
Okay. If I’m being honest with you right now, I’d say that I had a really hard time reading this book. Therese’s simplicity was so childlike, and oh so flowery. And like many 21st century gals, simplicity is not really a part of my life. When we think of our relationship with God, we think of big things. Or at least we want big things. We want the Broadway version, complete with constant reminders and all the warm fuzzies. But sometimes that’s not how God works. In fact, most of the time, He works in the smallest moments, the ones that we can so easily overlook. And that is where Therese’s wisdom, no matter how simple, comes in. So please consider reading her amazing work. I think I’m going to challenge myself to read it again soon.
Kisses from Katie | Katie Davis
These are the treasures that come from trying to find a good book at a Christian Book store. This book is gold. Katie’s story of life in Uganda is thrilling and awe inspiring. From becoming a young mother of 13, to mission work, to a whole foundation for her new people, her story is so beautiful. She threw away the easy life she had grown up with and defied so many standards of ‘normal’ to do what she was passionate about. Even now, she still lives and loves in Uganda, along with her husband and biological son. That’s right, 14 children!!
I Choose the Sky | Emily Wilson
Talk about a book that has been on my radar for basically forever. I love Emily Wilson and have heard so many wonderful things about her devotional book. So, when I finally purchased it, I knew I wouldn’t be disappointed. And I wasn’t. This book is so much more than just a women’s devotional. It is an in-depth study of 17 biblical women, all of whom are serious lady bosses and should be role models for us all. Emily manages to hit all the major issues that we women are facing right now, while looking through the lenses of these strong women. Such a good read!!
Emotional Virtue | Sarah Swafford
This book. Is Amazing. Put simply, this book breaks down why we do what we do in the Catholic Church in all things related to sexuality. It breaks down our personhood and the dignity that we each, man and woman, possess. It breaks down the importance of protecting this dignity and helping to protect the dignity of others. Sarah speaks as one who has been there. She knows where each of us is coming from and has talked to hundreds of individuals, young and old, about these issues. She is a book of knowledge and I highly recommend that you read her book!!
The Other Side of Beauty | Leah Darrow
When I first heard of Leah a few years ago, I was shocked to find a now Catholic speaker with her diverse background. Leah, as many of you may know, lived many years as a model in New York, even appearing on America’s Next Top Model! But none of this ‘beauty’ made her truly happy. In this book, the now mom of four is spreading a whole new message of beauty. She openly shares the lies of the beauty industry for all to hear and uplifts the true goodness that lies within all of us as women. Yes, we have so much more to offer: nothing less than our true, authentic beauty.
The Courage to Soar | Simone Biles
While this book is not a particularly Catholic book, I still wanted to recommend it for one reason. Simone is a fearless soul who did not let her situation or surroundings come in between her and her dreams. She overcame family issues, as well as mental, physical, and spiritual issues before she ever reached the big screen in 2016. Her Catholic faith did play a big part in her formation as a person. So, if you’re in the mood for an inspiring, uplifting kind of book, I would definitely check this one out!!
Divine Mercy In My Soul | St. Faustina Kowalska
Okay, this one is a bit of a bonus. Because I haven’t actually read it. But now it’s a challenge for all of us because I still think it is a must read! The message of Divine Mercy is so strong and important. The idea of an all loving God who is also all-merciful is enough to puzzle theologians for decades. And God gave the knowledge of this devotion to a quiet little nun in Krakow, Poland. St. Faustina was not anyone important. She was simply living the life of a sister and being constantly open to the call of God. Her openness should be a lesson to us all as we go about our faith journey.
What are some of your favorite, must-read books? Have a blessed day!!