Recommended Books, Apps and More

Recommended Books

I love books. Books and the ideas embedded in them have changed my life. And they have changed the life of my clients, friends, and community. Therefore, I thought I would put together a list of a little over a 130 books (I know …it’s a lot) that have profoundly shaped my life and many of the people that I work with. In fact, I would say that the majority of these books have been mentioned in session (by me or the client) on numerous occasions over the years. They are all books that I have read and many I have read over numerous times, and continue to re-read.

Books can be hard to recommend sometimes though because every reader has different tastes about what they like. What all these books do contain are some major ideas that have shifted the thinking for myself and many. These books and ideas come from a wide variety of voices with varying views and beliefs, therefore, I am letting you know that I don’t necessarily love, like, believe, or ascribe to every idea in every book. But I believe that each of these books have some important ideas about how we can transform our lives. I hope you find this list helpful.

Leadership, Personal Development, Vocation and Performance

Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance

Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less

Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World

Peak Performance: Elevate Your Game, Avoid Burnout, and Thrive with the New Science of Success

Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead

Rising Strong: How the Ability to Reset Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead

Braving the Wilderness: The Quest for True Belonging and the Courage to Stand Alone

Endure: Mind, Body, and the Curiously Elastic Limits of Human Performance

A Failure of Nerve, Revised Edition: Leadership in the Age of the Quick Fix

In the Name of Jesus: Reflections on Christian Leadership

Finding Ultra, Revised and Updated Edition: Rejecting Middle Age, Becoming One of the World’s Fittest Men, and Discovering Myself

Eat and Run: My Unlikely Journey to Ultramarathon Greatness

Letters to a Young Poet

Boundaries Updated and Expanded Edition: When to Say Yes, How to Say No To Take Control of Your Life

The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles

Do the Work: Overcome Resistance and Get Out of Your Own Way

Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain

Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage

The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics

Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life

The Writing Life

Open: An Autobiography

Man’s Search for Meaning

Let Your Life Speak: Listening for the Voice of Vocation

A Hidden Wholeness: The Journey Toward an Undivided Life

Faith, Spiritual Formation and Pastoral Ministry

No Man Is an Island

New Seeds of Contemplation

The Sacred Journey: A Memoir of Early Days

Life Together: The Classic Exploration of Christian in Community

The Cost of Discipleship

The Wounded Healer: Ministry in Contemporary Society

The Way of the Heart: Connecting with God Through Prayer, Wisdom, and Silence

The Human Adventure: The Art of Contemplative Living

Against an Infinite Horizon: The Finger of God in Our Everyday Lives

Raising Abel: The Recovery of the Eschatological Imagination

Can You Drink the Cup? by Henri J. M. Nouwen (1-Sep-1996) Paperback

Surprised by Hope: Rethinking Heaven, the Resurrection, and the Mission of the Church

The Recovery of Love

Working the Angles: The Shape of Pastoral Integrity

The Contemplative Pastor: Returning to the Art of Spiritual Direction

The Shape of Living: Spiritual Directions for Everyday Life

The Critical Journey, Stages in the Life of Faith, Second Edition

Eat This Book: A Conversation in the Art of Spiritual Reading

Christ Plays in Ten Thousand Places: A Conversation in Spiritual Theology

The Pastor: A Memoir

Five Smooth Stones for Pastoral Work

A Long Obedience in the Same Direction: Discipleship in an Instant Society

On Being Human: Essays in Theological Anthropology (Ray S. Anderson Collection)

Invitation to Love 20th Anniversary Edition: The Way of Christian Contemplation

Praying the Truth: Deepening Your Friendship with God through Honest Prayer

Answering God: The Psalms as Tools for Prayer

Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith

Generation to Generation: Family Process in Church and Synagogue (The Guilford Family Therapy Series)


The Brothers Karamazov: A Novel in Four Parts and an Epilogue

Crime and Punishment

Atonement: A Novel

Things Fall Apart

One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich

Notes from Underground (Vintage Classics)

The Stranger

I highly recommend that the 6 books below, which are a part of the Starbridge Series be read in the order they were written (i.e. order below). I have read the series 9 times and have learned something new about myself each time. Though for anyone, I highly recommend that people in ministry, especially pastors, read this series
Glittering Images (Starbridge)

Glamorous Powers

Ultimate Prizes

Scandalous Risks: A Novel (Starbridge)

Mystical Paths (Starbridge)

Absolute Truths (Starbridge)

Recommended Apps & Resources

In session I am often recommending a variety of tools to clients, from mobile apps, to journals, to relational card decks and videos. Below are some of the tools that I find myself or clients talking about on regular occasions.

Leadership and Performance Card Decks