Earlier this week, I read a blog by Sarah Bessey, titled, Whats on my nightstandWhat I am into (www.sarahbessey.com) that I loved so much I felt compelled to copy it. I know Sarah wouldn’t mind either, because she is just that kind of girl! Sarah’s blog gave a rundown of all the books, movies, T.V. shows, podcasts, and even food, she is into. Mine, well, we will start with “what’s on my nightstand”.

The Bible | NIV/The Message Parallel Bible: If you know me at all, this will be an obvious choice. If it isn’t on your nightstand, why not give it a try. It is the National #1 best-selling book of all times. Its stories beat any reality T.V. show. And if you have any doubts, fears, or questions about who you are or what your future may hold, this book has the answers.

At the Feet of Jesus | Joanna Weaver: Co-authored by one of my best friends, Angela Howard (www.noordinarydays.com), I read this daily devotional every night. So grateful for Joanna’s words of wisdom. I am looking forward to having Joanna as our guest speaker at NW Women’s Conference this year in September (www.northwestwomen.com).

Murder in the Cathedral | T.S. Eliot: A classic drama from 1935. No I didn’t just pick this off the bookstore shelf. As much as I love T.S. Eliot, this book is one of my many books I was given to read for my Master’s program at Gonzaga. A challenge, yes. But worth the read, absolutely! My favorite quote for you to ponder: “The last temptation is the greatest treason: To do the right deed for the wrong reason” (Eliot, 1963, p. 44).

Sacred Rhythms | Ruth Haley Barton: A book I have read many times and recommend highly. This book is an invitation to spiritual transformation with tangible exercises in many different disciplines that will change your life. I am currently going through it chapter-by-chapter with a Journey Leadership Group. It makes for great group discussion.

Common Prayer…A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals: Whether you are an observer of lent or not, this book is a beautiful way to honor this season through prayer of scripture. I use it all year long but it seems very relevant in the months leading up to Easter. You can view an online version at: www.commonprayer.net.

Pedagogy of the Oppressed | Paulo Freire: When I received this book, I felt like I was the last to know about it. In its 30th addition, this classic has changed my definitions on the words: freedom, oppressor and oppressed. Freire taught that it is the vocation of every person to become “fully human”. Anything that stands in the way of that is oppression. For liberation to succeed, a revolutionary leader must be more than an activist, they must be a person who enters into reflective and active dialogue with the oppressed. If social justice is your thing, get the book!

The Courage to Teach | Parker Palmer: A practical and intentional book on how to set up groups that desire transformation. Although the title is, The Courage to Teach, you could replace the word “teach”, with “lead” or any other occupation you hold. This book is about community, conversation, and change.

The Leadership Challenge | Kouzes & Posner: Another Master’s class book, but this is one I highly recommend for any leader. No matter how long you have been leading, this book provides exemplary practices and a credible foundation to build your leadership skills on. And as an added bonus, it might be long but it is an easy read.

Leadership in Organizations | Gary Yukl: Again, another Master’s class book. I have been told by many that Yukl’s Leadership in Organizations book is a “classic” that every leader should have on their bookshelf but I would disagree. Unless you are in need of some technical research data (that doesn’t end up proving Yukl’s point in the end) don’t buy this book. There are so many other quality books on leadership that you could buy for a quarter of the price. If you do find yourself required to purchase this one, please email me, and I will send you my copy!

Leadership and the New Science | Margaret Wheatley: The tag line on this book is: Discovering order in a chaotic world. If you are a leader in the midst of change, I highly recommend this book. It is compassionate, intelligent, and you will walk away with some tools that will help you meet change head on!

The Female Advantage | Sally Helgesen: This is the third book I have read by Sally. The first, was the Web of Inclusion a required read for my last class. Sally does extensive research on corporate structure, how men and women lead, and organizations that get it right. Fascinating work. I would recommend anything she writes or blogs about.

That is what is on my nightstand. What about you? What are you reading or listening to?