In this section I hope to provide resources to help you mature in your faith and grow as a human: personal resources, books, educational links, pdfs and podcasts – resources I’ve used on my own journey. And I’ll add to them as I discover new things, because I always want to be open to the Spirit’s prompting, to the Living Word, and to the Lord who will never be finished with me until I meet him face to face. It’s important on this journey we open our hearts and minds to learning, to growing, to becoming the people God created us to be.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. 2 Corinthians 5:17
Below you’ll find some of my favorite books and websites that continue to help me grow along my spiritual journey. (Please note, books are purposely not linked to any large house of sales, but merely listed as references for more information and your own exploration.).
I’ve also listed Crisis and Helplines, in case you or someone you know should need them.
I’ll be refreshing and updating these as I’m made aware of new resources. Please let me know in the comments section if you have any you’d like me to check out.
National and International Hotlines
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
1-800-273-8255 (Press 1)
Text: 838255 to Get Help NOW
International Association for Suicide Prevention
Visit for a list of international resources and numbers
Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network
For men and women survivors; military and international
1-800-656-4673 [24/7 hotline]
National Advocacy for Local LGBT Communities
Crisis & Suicide Prevention Lifeline for LGBTQ Youth
Confidential chatting and texting available
National Domestic Violence Hotline
1-800-799-7233 or 1-800-787-3224 (TTY)
National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline
1-866-331-9474 or 1-866-331-8453 (TTY)
24-hour chat line, or Text: LOVEIS to 22522
24-hour chat line
National Alliance on Mental Illness
National Center on Elder Abuse
National Human Trafficking Hotline
Polaris Project: 1-800-373-7888
Text: HELP or INFO to BeFree
For other international crisis lines, please visit:
A list of organizations by country working to combat human trafficking and labor and sexual exploitation.
The Zero International Hotlines
Together We Are Strong Helplines
Mental Illness helplines
Books (Alphabetized by Author)
Understanding the Bible
Introducing the New Testament by D.A. Carson and Douglas Moo
Answers the “who, what, when, where and why” questions for each book of the New Testament. If your Bible doesn’t include an introduction or commentary, this is an especially valuable resource. Includes an explanation of synoptic gospels and what each book contributes to our understanding of our faith.
How to Read the Bible for All Its Worth by Gordon Fee & Douglas Stuart
An easy to understand approach to reading the Bible by genre. Includes historical context, literary context, and how to apply the message to current times and our individual lives.
Letters from a Skeptic by Dr. Gregory A. Boyd and Edward K. Boyd
In a three-year, intimate correspondence, a graduate of Yale Divinity School and Princeton Theological Seminary wrestles with his atheist father’s tough questions about Christianity.
The Case for Faith by Lee Strobel
The author uses his journalism degree, Master’s of Law degree from Yale Law School, and experience as legal editor of the Chicago Tribune to conduct interviews and ask tough questions about faith. In the course of his probing, Strobel, a former atheist, discovers many of his own intellectual obstacles to faith fall away.
The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel
As in The Case for Faith, Strobel asks penetrating questions of experts who are recognize authorities in their own field to discover the truth about who Jesus was, what he did, and who He is.
Cold Case Christianity by J. Warner Wallace
Featured on Dateline, Fox News and Court TV, Wallace, a homicide detective and former atheist, writes convincingly of the evidence in the four gospels of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus.
Simply Christian by N.T. Wright
Wright plainly and beautifully explains what Christianity is truly about to those who have no knowledge, or may have a distaste for, Christianity in particular or religion in general. He takes the reader through a step by step, question by question process, resisting the political controversies that obscure the true essence of Christianity.
Understanding Eschatology by Rob Dalrymple
In spite of the title, an easy to read book about Revelation. Debunks the myth about the “rapture,” and explains the New Jerusalem and Christ’s return.
Disarming Scripture: Why We All Need to Learn to Read the Bible Like Jesus Did by Derek Flood
Flood takes a close look at how both Jesus and Paul read scripture in the context of the fundamentalism of their day. Disarming Scripture shows why questioning is not only an acceptable part of a healthy faith, but an absolutely essential part of it.
Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller
Blue Like Jazz is Miller’s highly original perspective on his roller coaster ride with Christianity. It is passionate, doubtful, soul-searching, honest and redemptive.
After You Believe by N.T. Wright
Have you ever felt out of step in your Christian beliefs and wondered where you belong? Have you’ve ever felt slightly adrift in your church and thought, “Am I following the same Jesus they are?” Has it ever seemed to you the Christians you know are speaking and acting like everyone else when Jesus told us not to conform? If so, this book is for you.
God’s Love and Grace
Love Wins by Rob Bell
Rob Bell tackles the hard and troubling questions of heaven and hell, and turns upside down the traditional view. He shows biblical evidence for the loving God we’ve come to know, and emphasizes the difference between the old covenant and the new – the one Jesus came to bestow.
Undiluted by Benjamin Corey
If you were to encounter Jesus in a typical Western church, you might ask yourself, “Is that all there is?” Corey thinks not. He describes the Jesus we tend not to see, the real, the responsive, the radical Jesus illustrated in the Bible pages that speak his words.
The Hyper Grace Gospel by Paul Ellis
Ellis describes the real grace of God. Not the stingy, selective, conditional grace we humans hand out, but the extreme, super-abundant, immeasurable, all-inclusive, life-giving, free gift that is Jesus and the Holy Spirit grace.
The Ragamuffin Gospel by Brennan Manning
Manning insists God loves us “furiously,” without performance standards, without “tallying our failures.” He simply smiles upon us, His chosen, and loves us.
One Way Love by Tullian Tchividjian
According to Tchividjian, God’s love is scandalous, unconditional, and stunning. It is one-way because of the One who gives it. It is offensive, because it is given so generously and so radically. It frees us from reciprocity and legalism. It is given with open hands and an open heart. It frees us from searching for what we already have.
What’s so Amazing About Grace by Philip Yancey
“True grace is shocking, scandalous. It shakes our conventions with its insistence on getting close to sinners and touching them with mercy and hope. He searches for its presence in his own life and in the church. He asks,’How can Christians contend graciously with moral issues that threaten all they hold dear?'” And he challenges us to be living examples of shocking, scandalous grace.
Learning Links (for edification and education)
Over 49,000 free ebooks: choose among free epub books, free kindle books, download them or read them online.
Topical conversations about the modern relevance of Jesus
Workbooks and Bible Study Guides by our own Don Merritt