Tag: spiritual reading

Book Review: Sex, Jesus, and the Conversations the Church Forgot, by Mo Isom

Image belongs to Baker Books.

Title: Sex, Jesus, and the Conversations the Church Forgot
Author:  Mo Isom
Genre:  Non-fiction, Christian
Rating:  5/5

Sex. (There. Got your attention, didn’t I?) Society is obsessed with it, and the church doesn’t talk about it, apart from an unequivocal “Don’t do it!” Christians don’t talk about it, but we should—because there are far too many people wandering lost in a world that glorifies sex, promiscuity, and sex-pectations.

Mo Isom talks about it as she tells her story of a life lived according to expectations, a life scarred by pornography, misunderstandings, and the silence of the church on a topic that permeates our culture. She takes something the world is obsessed with, removes the bondage associated with it, and turns it into something that glorifies God.

I don’t generally review non-fiction books, especially the Christian books I read. (They’re on my Goodreads and my Books Read posts, though.) However, this book is one that needs to be talked about. I grew up in church—Southern Baptist—and my church never talked about sex. (My current church—non-denominational—does talk about it, some.) None of the churches my friends grew up in talked about sex. But our culture is obsessed with it. So, why is the church not talking about it? Why does the church let the world be the only source of information related to a topic that saturates our culture? And why are we surprised when Christians have a worldly view of sex, and not a Godly view?

I loved Mo Isom’s voice in this. (So much so that I’m now reading her first book.) She does talk about sex: her exposure to it growing up, the silence on it she experienced in the church, and her struggles to give it its rightly place—not a worldly one. Her voice is like a comfortable chat with a friend and makes this a must-read book.

Mo Isom is a New York Times-bestselling author, a former All-American soccer goalkeeper, and the first female to have trained with and tried out for an SEC men’s football team. She is the author of Wreck My Life:  Journeying from Broken to Bold and her newest book, Sex, Jesus, and the Conversations the Church Forgot.

(Galley provided by Baker Books in exchange for an honest review.)


What I Read in June

Not quite as many books as May, but still a good number.

Powers, by John B. Olson

The Harbringer:  The Ancient Mystery that Holds the Secret of America’s Future, by Johnathan Cahn

The Fireman, by Joe Hill (Yes, he is Stephen King’s son, but Joe Hill has some serious writer’s chops in his own right. I could not put this book down!)

(I do not own this image. Image belongs to Curiosity Quills Press.)

Deadgirl:  Ghostlight, by B.C. Johnson (Read to review.)

Deadgirl, by B.C. Johnson (And, because I enjoyed the second one so much, I bought the first book–yes, I read them out-of-order. Excellent series, with a very dsitinct voice. I highly recommend.)

ash island
(I do not own this image. Image belongs to J.H. Lucas.)

Escape to Ash Island, by J.H. Lucas (Read to review.)

vinegar girl
(I do not own this image. Image belongs to Crown Publishing.)

Vinegar Girl, by Anne Tyler (read to review.)

running like a girl

Running Like a Girl, by Alexandria Heminsley (Very enjoyable read.)

The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini (From my TBR pile.)

confessions of a fat marathoner

Confessions of a Fat Marathoner, by Kristina Burkey (Made me laugh, as well as inspired me.)

Tess of the D’Urbervilles, by Thomas Hardy (UGH. I know this was written a long time ago, but this book made me ANGRY. The guy raped her, and blamed it on her? What?! This is my classic read for the month.)

Frequency:  Tune In. Hear God. by Robert Morris (He’s my pastor, and I love to hear him speak. He just finished this sermon series, and his conversational tone in this book makes it so much easier to comprehend.)

You’ll Get Through This, by Max Lucado (Read as my spiritual book for the month.)

Fire Danger, by Claire Davon (Review forthcoming.)


Pleasure Reading vs Required Reading

This week, I’m on Spring Break, so technically I shouldn’t be doing homework. And I’m not doing a lot, but I’m doing some. Working on an essay for grad school. Outlining the short story that is my final paper in my capstone English class. Reading.

Sounds horrible, doesn’t it?

Here’s what I’m supposed to be reading this week:

  1. simplify, by Bill Hybels (for my monthly reading goal):  10 pages a day
  2. Against All Things Ending, by Stephen R. Donaldson (monthly goal):  30 pages a day
  3. Little Women, by Louisa May Alcott (for school):  35 pages a day
  4. The Coquette, by Hannah W. Foster (for school):  20% on 5 days
  5. 2 chapters in Connected:  living in the Light of the Trinity, by Sam Alberry (for school)
  6. 2 chapters and the introduction in Truth Decay:  Defending Christianity Against the Challenges of Postmodernism, by Douglas R. Groothius (for school)
  7. The Greatest Zombie Movie Ever, by Jeff Strand (reading to review)

You see my problem? I love to read. I’m a quick reader. But….I’m where I’m supposed to be on #1 and #4. I intend to catch up on #3 and #2 today, and start #5. That leaves me #6 and #7 for…sometime.



The (Changing) Habits of Readers

Okay, I admit it.  I love to read fiction.  Especially fantasy.  Bonus enjoyability points if it’s YA fantasy.  I’ve read predominantly fantasy for years now, with a few forays out into mysteries, forensic thrillers, and humor (Stephanie Plum, anyone?).  I normally read several books at a time, with one “main” book that I pick up whenever I have a spare moment.  Normally, these are all fiction.

But lately, my TBR pile has moved into uncharted territory for me:  non-fiction.  Exclusively non-fiction.  What?  That’s what I thought, too.  Now, instead of the latest fantasy gem to catch my eye, I’m reading–and eagerly awaiting reading–books like The Omnivore’s Dilemma, In Defense of Food, Pandora’s Seed, and The First Human.  Granted, The First Human is reading for my anthropology class, but I’m really enjoying it and am finding it quite interesting.  Pandora’s Seed also started off as reading for my evolution and ecology class–last semester–but it’s pretty interesting as well, and ties into my latest personal research into environmental issues.  The Omnivore’s Dilemma and In Defense of Food are both about topics that I find very relevant of late, as I focus more on my health and eating healthier in general.  Both gave me a lot of–excuse the pun–food for thought, and gave me more focus on how I spend my food dollars, and the statement I want to make with them.

I’ve also been doing more spirit-based reading, including The Blessed Life, by Pastor Robert Morris (pastor at my church, Gateway Church, and a phenomenally gifted speaker).  Up next are the Divine Revelation books, and some more spirit-based reading.

Basically, I’ve found that my reading habits have changed lately, more closely tying in to the personal growth areas I’m working on.  Instead of reading for sheer entertainment, now I seem to be drawn to books that will help me grow.

Does anyone else find that their reading habits change over time, or in certain situations?