What’s On My Nightstand, April

Here’s a look at what I’ve been reading…

I recently finished reading Discipline: The Glad Surrender by Elisabeth Elliot. So recently, in fact, that I finished it yesterday in car line just in time for our book club meeting tonight! I liked it; I will say, however, it wasn’t what I expected even though I really have no idea what I was expecting! I really liked what she had to say about the discipline of work:

What constitutes a “great work for God”? Where does it begin? Always in humility. Not in being served, but in serving. Not in self-actualization but in self-surrender.

Good stuff there. I don’t intend to write a full-blown review but while I’m here I’ll tell you I also liked her point about possessions, that they are given to us by God,  received with thanksgiving, to be enjoyed, and ultimately offered back to Him in a sacrifice of willing surrender. I found her treatment of the discipline of place to be the most intriguing as she discussed the believer giving honor to others, treating others as better than themselves. As I said, good stuff.

We will begin a Wednesday night study at my church based on the book Knowing God by J.I. Packer so that will make its way onto my reading stack now that I’ve completed Discipline. I just received The God Who Is There, The: Finding Your Place in God’s Story by D.A. Carson and I’m really excited about reading that.

In the fiction arena, I am currently reading Charles Dickens’ Our Mutual Friend, at the recommendation of a friend. I like it; Dickens is a master both of caricature and of the sorts of twists and turns that keeps the reader guessing. Plus it is at times laugh out loud funny! It is taking me a lot longer to read this novel than I thought; I’ve been working on it for two weeks now! I won’t say it’s getting tedious; I will say I am ready to know how all the various plot and subplots fall into place.

After Our Mutual Friend, I’d like to read Beth Pattillo’s The Dashwood Sisters Tell All. I liked her first two Austen-esque novels so I’m looking forward to this one. I also have Hannah Coulter by Wendell Berry in my stack and I checked out The No.1 Ladies’ Detective Agency from the library at the same time I checked out Our Mutual Friend (not knowing it would take me the full two weeks’ allotted and then some! Thankfully we can re-check once!). Our book club will be reading Jane Austen’s Persuasion for our May meeting and I’m (of course) looking forward to that.

What are you reading this month? Link up at 5 Minutes for Books and check out others’ lists as well!


Author: Lisa Spence

Wife, mother, Bible teacher, bibliophile, occasional blogger

18 thoughts on “What’s On My Nightstand, April”

  1. Now I want to try Our Mutual Friend. In all my 'thinking I was going to major in English' days, I never managed to read that one. And I really liked the No. Ladies' Detective Agency – you've reminded me I want to go back and read more of the series.

  2. I need to add Elisabeth Elliot’s book to my list. I don’t think I’ve ever read a whole book by her! Your Wednesday night study sounds good on Knowing God. I love that book.

  3. I read the first of the No. 1 Ladies… books a few years back and remember really enjoying it, but for some reason, I got sidetracked and didn't continue on in the series. It does seem appropriate for spring/summer reading, for some reason. 🙂

  4. I've wanted to read/study Knowing God for a long time, but never have.I read the first few No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency books, and they just didn't do it for me. I don't know why, because it's the kind of book I usually like!

  5. Great list! I just finished Persuasion a few days ago and have the Beth Patillo books in my stack for a Jane Austen reading challenge I'm participating in. I'm going through the DVD series of The God Who Is There with 3 friends and reading the accompanying chapters in the book as we go along. Good stuff! And now I need to add the Elisabeth Elliot title to my list…it sounds great!

  6. I love Dickens. Loved the movie, Our Mutual Friend – BBC usually gets them right.I'm thinking a lot about you all today and pray God protects you.

  7. I might just have to read Discipline: The Glad Surrender. I've read and enjoyed Packer's Knowing God–and have heard a Carson lecture series with the same title as the book you just got. I wonder if there's any new information in the book or if it's basically just a written form of the lecture series. Hmm…

  8. I read the first of the No. 1 Ladies… books a few years back and remember really enjoying it, but for some reason, I got sidetracked and didn't continue on in the series. It does seem appropriate for spring/summer reading, for some reason. 🙂

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