The Gift of a Good Book
Last year, under the glow of an evergreen tree and twinkle lights, I unwrapped a gift that didn’t fade after Christmas morning, but only grew brighter through the year. That gift was the book Deeper, of the Union Series, by Dane C. Ortlund. I remember taking it with me in my purse to our family Christmas parties that day, almost feeling wooed by it, called away to a place I had never been but always longed to go with the Lord. Deeper.
The following months I spent many mornings sipping coffee and pouring over the words of this book, often with tears rolling down my cheeks. The more I read, the more my heart was undone by the beauty of Jesus. A beauty, that if I’m honest, I had long forgotten. A beauty that I am often rushing too fast to, “Taste and see that the LORD is good!” (Psalm 34:8)
Nothing is more powerful than the kind of book that leads you to adore Christ. And nothing is more precious. That’s why after reading Deeper, I was so delighted to find that there was a whole series of these kinds of books, and a whole world to discover at Union Publishing
Discover the Books You’ve
Been Longing For
If you’ve read any of Union’s books, then you already know how they sparkle not only with light of the gospel, but the warmth of the gospel. These books are far different from anything else I have read in that they are theologically rich books that brought tears to my eyes, and joy to my heart. The very heartbeat behind these books is something rare and precious, as their mission is not, “simply depositing knowledge, but to communicate in a way that helps us experience and delight in the gracious, abundant, and lavishing love of the Father, in the Son, through the Spirit. It is here, and only here, that we feel differently, love differently, walk differently. At a time when leaders seem to be dropping like flies due to moral and spiritual failure, the church of Christ so desperately needs a reformation of the heart.” (from the Union Publishing Mission Statement)
Perhaps you are intrigued to know that books with such a warm sparkling glow do exist, but where do you start?
The Union Series
The following books are part of the Union Series which “invites readers to experience deeper enjoyment of God through four interconnected values: delighting in God, growing in Christ, serving the church, and blessing the world.” These books are a true breath of fresh air, and a treasure to all who find them:
Rejoice and Tremble: The Surprising Goodnews of the Fear of the Lord by Michael Reeves
In Rejoice and Tremble, Michael Reeves clears the clouds of confusion and shows that the fear of the Lord is not a negative thing at all, but an intensely delighted wondering at God, our Creator and Redeemer.
Deeper: Real Change for Real Sinners by Dane Ortlund
In this book, Deeper, Dane Ortlund points believers to Christ, making the case that sanctification does not happen by doing more or becoming better, but by going deeper into the wondrous gospel truths that washed over them when they were first united to him.
The Loveliest Place: The Beauty and Glory of the Church by Dustin Benge
In The Loveliest Place, Dustin Benge urges Christians to see the holy assembly of God’s redeemed people in all its eternal beauty. For those who have never learned to view the church as God sees it, or have become disillusioned by its flaws, this book is a reminder that the corporate gathering of believers is a reflection of God’s indescribable beauty.
God Shines Forth: How the Nature of God Shapes and Drive the Mission of the Church
by Daniel Hames and Michael Reeves
In God Shines Forth, Daniel Hames and Michael Reeves argue that an individual’s relationship with God influences their evangelism and missions more than anything else. Scripture clearly shows that a believer’s responsibility is to make God known in the world, but this cannot be done without first knowing and enjoying God. A delightful read!
New Titles to Explore from
Right with God by Michael Reeves
How do we become right with God? Michael Reeves warmly and clearly introduces what the Bible teaches about justification by faith alone. For anyone who does not know Christ or is lacking confidence in their salvation, the Bible has good news of comfort and joy. This is a short, but powerful book that can be gifted to many this holiday!
Come and See: A History and Theology of Mission by Justin Schell & Glen Scrivener
Come and See lays a theological and biblical foundation for Christian mission, inviting you to savor and participate in the grand story of God’s mission that begins in Genesis and continues today. Perfect for church-based training programs, Come and See will introduce readers to both the theology of mission and the history of God’s work through the church on mission. You and your church are welcomed to join the great mission story that God is telling!
Authentic Ministry: Serving from the Heart by Michael Reeves
Authentic ministry is not simply a matter of mastering professional skills or of endlessly pouring oneself out in works of service. Rather, it springs from joyful union with the heart of Christ. Authentic Ministry offers practical guidance and spiritual nourishment for all who serve the church.
A full list of titles can be purchased in the Union Publishing shop.
Give the Gift of Union this Christmas
These books are a gift–a delight to give, and a joy to receive. Prayerfully consider who the Lord might have you gift one of these books to this Christmas. And don’t be afraid to request them yourself. Truth be told, the only reason Deeper was waiting for me under our tree last year, was because I texted the link to my husband asking him to, “Please buy this for me!” with probably too many exclamation points. It did not change the fact that this book was a profound gift to my heart.
Whether you are gifting Union books to others, or adding them to your wishlist, you will be so thankful you did. Why? Because what better gift than to share the light and warmth of Jesus Christ in books that will light their darkest nights through the long winter ahead and throughout the coming year? What better gift have we ever received than that of Jesus Christ coming into this world, to save sinners, such as us? What better gift could we give or ask for, or receive at Christmas, than to have our gaze set on him–the Son of glory? What better gift than to be awakened yet again to the Spirit of the living God, to be rowed out into the depths of his glory, to see even in the midst of this deep darkness, the glory of his dawn arising, to see the blazing light of the only one who will not burn out or fade away, Jesus Christ?
For then, and only then, can we at last sing the carol, “O Holy Night,” with meaning, “A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices. For yonder breaks, a new and glorious morn.” By spending time in the light and warmth of these books, that new and glorious morn can happen again and again, morning by morning, all through the year as you set your very heart on him. It is here, your love for Christ will only deepen, and grow, and your spirit will be ever more brightly fanned into flame.