Cher-Reading Favorite Spiritual Books

In September, I posted a list of favorite books I’ve read this year and have continued to update the list with new favorites. Here is a list specific to my favorite spiritual books that I have read! If you are Catholic, or are looking for inspiration, you might want to take a look at these books. They also make for excellent presents!

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Interested in reading about other books I have read and can recommend?
See Cher-Reading List


Books

Books by Ronald Rolheiser
Ronald Rolheiser, a Roman Catholic priest and member of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, is President of the Oblate School of Theology in San Antonio, Texas. He is a community-builder, lecturer, and writer. As a Catholic author and religious speaker he is influential to those who face struggles in life. His books address the lonely, the distraught, the abused and wounded, the forgotten, the heart of those struggling with God, and those longing for God on a deeper spiritual level. He shows how God is present amidst suffering, restlessness, anxiety, jealousies, and obsessions and the importance of prayer as part of everyday life. In his books, he explains that each life seeks fulfillment for our innate longing for God. Fr. Rolheiser brings empathy, hope, consolation, and inspiration with his writings. Once you read one book, you’ll want to read his entire collection! I enjoyed all of them.

The Holy Longing: The Search for a Christian Spirituality
by Ronald Rolheiser
This book explains Christian spirituality and the universal struggle for love and integration of spirit explaining God and the Church for a world that more often than not doubts the credibility of both.

Seeking Spirituality
by Ronald Rolheiser
Find out Christian spirituality is and why we struggle with it. He gives practical advice on how to build a spirituality for today and for the next century.

Our One Great Act of Fidelity: Waiting for Christ in the Eucharist
by Ronald Rolheiser
Delve into the history and meaning of this sacred tradition with this explanation of the Eucharist.

The Shattered Lantern: Rediscovering a Felt Presence of God
by Ronald Rolheiser
Rediscover how faith makes sense and the real presence of God.

Living in the Sacred: Spirituality for Everyday Life
by Ronald Rolheiser
Learn how to live spirituality in everyday life as disciples of Christ and stay true to commitments living selflessly for others.

Prayer: Our Deepest Longing
by Ronald Rolheiser
Learn the importance of prayer and how to pray, using examples from daily life, Scripture, and contemporary writers.

A Christian Guide to Spirituality:
Foundations for Disciples (Christian Spirituality Book 1)

by Ronald Rolheiser
This guide includes 50 daily devotions. Each topic is treated with a scriptural reference, reflection, prayer, and questions for discussion.

The Passion and the Cross
by Ronald Rolheiser
These meditations on the Passion and the Cross invites you to a new understanding of redemption and offers insight into the meaning of your own loss and suffering.

The Restless Heart: Finding Our Spiritual Home in Times of Loneliness
by Ronald Rolheiser
Connectiveness has changed in the modern world of cell phones and instant messaging. This book discusses the different types of loneliness and the dangers and opportunities they represent in our lives.

Daily Reflections for Advent and Christmas
by Ronald Rolheiser
This book shows us God’s love is unconditional and the importance of forgiveness.

Sacred Fire: A Vision for a Deeper Human and Christian Maturity
by Ronald Rolheiser
Be inspired on a journey of Christian maturity in pursuit of the most holy of all passions—a deep and lasting intimacy with God.

Wrestling with God: Finding Hope and Meaning in Our Daily Struggles to Be Human
by Ronald Rolheiser
Find hope and meaning in daily struggles, finding a path for faith in a world struggling to find faith, and a rhythm within which to walk that path.

Bruised And Wounded: Struggling To Understand Suicide
by Ronald Rolheiser
Work through the grief associated with the trauma of experiencing a loss from suicide.


Eucharist
The Key the Doctrine of the Eucharist
by Abbot Vonier, foreword Peter Kreeft and Aiden Nichols
The richness of the sacrament of the Eucharist and the biblical meaning behind the tradition of the sacrifice at the Mass is explained in this book. I enjoyed this book so much, I read it twice.


Mary
Walking with Mary: A Biblical Journey from Nazareth to the Cross
by Edward Sri
Mary was obedient to God’s will, continuing to say yes even under the most difficult circumstances always trusting and believing in humbleness and obedience. This book takes a journey through Mary’s life and shows how she lives her life, filled with faith, with examples that can be applied to our own journey.


Jesus
Jesus, The Way, the Truth and The Life
by Marcellino D’Ambrosio
If you have ever struggled with reading the Bible, this book pieces the stories and books of the Bible together with clarity using everyday language. There are interesting historical tidbits and facts included which enrich a person’s understanding of the Bible and the time in history in which Jesus lived.


Virtues
The Power of Humility
by Fr. Candice Bourke
This book explains what being humble means in relation to God, other people, and in the way a person views themself. The power of humility changes a person to live a more virtuous life.


Prayer
15 Days of Prayer with Thomas Merton
by Andre Gozier, O.S.B.
Thomas Merton, a Cistercian monk, draws from classic and monastic spirituality with daily suggestions of how to pray to have a stronger relationship with God.


Spiritual Guidance
Thank You for Being Such a Pain. Spiritual Guidance for Dealing with Difficult People.
by Mark I. Rosen, PhD
This book provides spiritual guidance on how to deal with people who can be challenging and advice on how to work through troublesome relationships. There are several enlightening quotes and stories throughout this book to enjoy and learn from as gems of inspiration.

Related article with inspirational books & media by Joel and Victoria Osteen:
Spiritual Encouragement: Turning to Prayer and Meditation to Find Encouragement


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Spiritual Encouragement: Turning to Prayer and Meditation to Find Encouragement

Many people turn to prayer and meditation to find encouragement. Prayer helps alleviate worries releasing them, leaving a sense of peacefulness. People who pray, find encouragement knowing there is something greater in control of the situation at hand. Time dedicated to prayer and meditation causes an inner peace which naturally results in greater charity and kindness toward others. Whatever you are going through, you can find encouragement, through prayer and meditation.

As the numbers increase of those with the Coronavirus, concerns of how the future will unfold are in question. People are faced with accumulating bills, jobs are in flux for many, and other uncertainties. Despite this, encouragement can be found in worrying less about the future, and focusing more on enjoying the present. There is a time for everything, and perhaps the biggest benefit is being able to enjoy a season of slowing down and making time for nature, people, and personal growth. Make today an enjoyable one and do something you haven’t had the chance to do. Spend time with those you love, speak to a stranger, or make friends with a person you’ve had a conflict with. With more businesses starting to re-open, fears are being subsided as people venture out and return to everyday life while practicing social distancing precautions to stay safe and healthy.

Spiritual growth helps people find encouragement in a world that is filled with despair and fear. It refocuses one’s thoughts on being thankful, casts away worries and doubts, increases charity toward others in speech and action, and enlightens one’s perspective for positivity and hope. Nurturing spirituality results in finding peace with any situation. Find encouragement with daily prayer and mediation!

Included below are #affiliate links to Joel and Victoria Osteen’s books and media. Joel Osteen is an inspirational pastor who unpacks the Gospel in an easy to understand way, with radiating positivity. He and his wife Victoria, have a collection of books and media to provide spiritual encouragement to any walk of life.

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Looking for more book recommendations? Cher-Reading Favorite Spiritual Books


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Books, E-Books, and Audiobooks
Spiritual Encouragement – Coronavirus

Spiritual Encouragement for Women
Spiritual Encouragement for Men
Spiritual Encouragement for Teens

Other Resources
Joel Osteen’s Books & Media
Victoria Osteen’s Books & Media

Novelty
Posters | Journals | Gifts


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Goals to Inspire Others

Choose to be a light of inspiration for all those who you encounter throughout the day. In how you communicate, what you do, and what you have to say, you have the ability to positively impact someone’s day. How you interact can cause a domino effect to affect others for better or worse. By resolving to raise your personal standard of etiquette, respect, and kindness, you will notice your relationships improve. Noticing an improvement with yourself, you will also see a significant change in how others interact with you. Living this way as a good example, others will also notice and re-evaluate how they are speaking and acting. You can be an example to others in the way you speech and act. Practicing good etiquette will add the dynamic components of respect, value, and human dignity to your relationships. Change the world! Inspire a culture of kindness and respect.


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Wish List for the Hopeful

Hope is positive thinking with the anticipation and expectation something will occur. It is a belief in what can happen, what is possible, and the good of what is believed will come. People who have hope have spirit of positiveness which is open to the possibilities of what can be rather than focus on the negative. Besides personal hope, there is also hope from doing good for others. For those who believe in karma, good actions toward another will result in a good outcome for them in areas of their life. They might be compelled to be kind toward others with the hope that their good works will benefit themselves in the long run because ‘what goes around comes around’.

Hope It’s Said Right

In How It Is Stated: When it comes to kindness and hope, a kind person will spread hope to others in the form of good will and good wishes. “I hope you feel better”, “I hope you get to come”, “I hope you are able to.” It is almost a form of a simple prayer because it asks for kindness to happen to another with belief when said sincerely

In How It Sounds: There is also an excitement which can come with having hope. This excitement can be contagious in anticipation for what is hoped for, and sometimes the combination of hope can be so strong that it actually will happen. When children squeal in excitement that they hope they can go to Disneyland, over the course of time, if it’s feasible, it’s likely what they hope for may very well happen. People want to fulfill the hopes and desires of others. When you state what you hope for, there is a chance it may happen. The same occurs with God and petitions, or prayer.

In Its Resilient Belief: When facing challenges in life, a person may have persevering hope which carries them through a trial helping to endure the most difficult parts. There also is the undying hope some have which will not go away. This can be a form of negative hope. There are times when having hope is not good to continue with. Usually this is in the form of certain relationships. One person may feel things should continue or hope for a change, and while this may seem heroic to have undying hope, unless there is a realistic possibility, it can be unhealthy—because there really is no hope.

Hoping well for another is a form of kindness. List how many times you think of others and have good, sincere wishes for them. Here’s hoping it’s plentiful! Maybe you are in a position to fulfill a hope that someone has. No time like the present of the season!

Clean Up Dallas with Culture and Kindness
@cultureofkind


Click on these resources on related topics…Shop online!

Wake Up to Hope: Devotional
by Joel and Victoria Osteen 

Facing Your Giants: God Still Does the Impossible
by Max Lucado

You’ll Get Through This: Hope and Help for Your Turbulent Times
by Max Lucado

Anxious for Nothing: Finding Calm in a Chaotic World
by Max Lucado


Whispers of Hope: 10 Weeks of Devotional Prayer
by Beth Moore

Hope for Today Bible

by Joel Osteen


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Encourage a Single

Do you know someone who is single? Along with being free of attachments, comes the burden of having to take care of all the to-do items by yourself, make decisions, and be self-reliable. While most singles are able to juggle their loads just fine, there are situations which arise where having an extra person to call upon in the case of an emergency is a relief. Even in the world of technology where we have almost any service available online, there are times when being able to rely on a friend is easier and more personable in times of trial. If you know a single person, consider offering to be a person available who they can call on in times like this.

Singles have the opportunity to have the time of their life. They can pickup and go places, make decisions on the spur of the moment and change plans at the drop of a hat. There is not a curfew time to be home by, no reason to not splurge now and then, and there are plenty of people to meet at many single social functions to attend. However, despite this, singles can become very lonely in a world filled with families and couples. Eating at a restaurant may not be as fun if there is no one available to eat with. Going to an event requires trying to find others who have the same interest who want to attend. Holidays with the family might be a challenge having to explain why there isn’t another half there. When the day is over, the home is one of one. Although much of this is enjoyed, not having a family to be part of can add to loneliness. Singles can get caught up in these lonely moments which can spiral the desire for a family or companionship into a dark tunnel of despair. One way families can encourage singles is by inviting them to join in at family events occasionally. A single can contribute to a family with their enthusiasm, energy, and experiences. Likewise, a family can rejuvenate a single with a feeling of love and belonging, a good meal, and a the warmth of a family atmosphere.

How can you encourage a single? Here are a few ideas:

  • Offer a hand with a move.
  • Spend time.
  • Invite a single person to join you for a meal.
  • Lend an ear to listen.
  • Offer to babysit the children of single parents.
  • Offer to let a single friend take your child out on an outing for the day.
  • Give a single friend your phone number and e-mail address for emergencies.
  • Offer a single person a ride to get their car fixed or to the airport.
  • Offer a hand to help on home projects which need repair or home-improvement.
  • Tell them they are important as a “1” in a world of 2s.
  • Give hope! Be kind!

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Do You Have the Job Search Blues?

Being in a job search can be difficult, especially if it goes on for a long period of time. While it seems that jobs are easy to find, many applicants can send out countless applications and never are discovered. The Internet has made job searching easier, but it is just as easy to get lost in the thousands of applications being received by employers. Online job application forms may be more complicated than necessary requiring pages of information to be filled out and duplicating resume information already uploaded. Doing this for one company is one thing, but by the time you’ve hit 100,000 job applications, you’re looking for the email address for the saintly company who just would like you to email them your resume and give them your phone number.

Unemployment doesn’t have to be a time of hopelessness. There is plenty of time to learn, network, and do things during the day which you may not have had time for before. The first few months can be new found freedom, but it soon gets old and can lead to despair. With too much time available during the day, a job seeker is left to figure out what to do. Reinventing each week with long-term and short-term goals helps to keep motivation up and a positive spirit. Here are a few ideas to ‘make it through’ the most difficult of days:

  • Get up reasonably early to find new energy with an entire day ahead of you.
  • Create a schedule. It helps to switch gears and have time limits set to accomplish tasks.
  • Make a goal list of what new skills you want to learn.
  • Practice and learn new skills each day. Create new work to add to your portfolio.
  • Make exercise as a mandatory part of your day.
  • Set aside time for prayer and meditation.
  • Listen to music.
  • Listen to motivational speakers.
  • Network with others who are in your field, as well as friends and family members.
  • If you become frustrated or lack motivation in your search for work, as is the case on some days, then give yourself permission to stop and do something completely different.
  • Take advantage of the time off to enjoy the outdoors, take a trip, explore and do things during the day you typically would not be able to do.
  • Find a hobby that you can enjoy. Check books out from the library.
  • Find another source of income with a part-time job or start your own business.
  • Change your environment and work elsewhere. Find new energy working at the library, a coffee shop, or another place.
  • Reward yourself with what is within budget. Treat yourself to a .50 cent soda, a slice of pizza, a bag of chocolate from the dollar store, or scavenger hunt at the stores for other discounts. For larger goals, make plans to treat yourself once you accomplish them.
  • Add “house projects” as part of your schedule—those projects you’ve been putting off.
  • Clean and organize your house, storage areas, and car. It will make you feel so much better and help streamline your time when you are employed again.
  • Volunteer.
  • Search for local events and workshops to attend.
  • Set aside job applications which are overly frustrating. These are the ones which are too involved or ones which are a struggle to fill out because the data fields do not easily take information. Set them aside until later or bypass them all together.
  • Be sure to plan for unemployment calls which have intricate voicemail systems or long hold times. Set aside time when you are doing something else and don’t mind holding on the phone. Make it a time to relax with a favorite drink or by the pool when you aren’t rushed. These types of calls can cause undue amounts of frustration and add to an already existing feeling of despair.
  • Remember that as important as finding employment is, your value as a person is not determined by your search or by others. Be diligent, but think of the bigger picture when hopelessness and despair starts to creep in.

By doing these things you can encourage yourself and fight the job search blues!

Do you know someone in a job search?
Offer positive words to reinforce their value and give them hope. Spending time with a job seeker doing something low-cost or free can help break up the monotony of being in isolation and give them new energy. Keep your ears open for job leads which you can pass on to them. 

@cultureofkind


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Imagine What a Little Encouragement Can Do

“How are you?”. As a variation of “Hello”, this greeting is heard many times a day with very little thought or meaning behind it for most people.  The reply “Fine” might not always be the complete truth but enough to move on to other conversation topics. Imagine if this greeting could be expressed with true meaning and empathy to all we encounter.

Everyone has struggles, some greater than others. Anything from being late to work because of car problems, having a sick family member, personal illness, job loss, feelings of inadequacy, seemingly unsurmountable challenges, a shattering divorce, or other tragedies— whatever the personal tragedy of the moment is, we have a responsibility to encourage one another and bring hope. Burdens can be lifted with words of hope and cheer and alleviate spirits weighed down by disappointment, discouragement, embarrassment, and hopelessness.

Being present with open ears and undivided attention is an invaluable gift you can give to someone who is struggling. By listening a person quietly steps into the realm of encouragement bringing a dose of compassion. Talking through struggles can help lighten burdens and even can be a way to work through solving problems. Even a person without any experience in counseling can provide empathy by just listening.

The basis of encouragement is reassurance and reinforcement. It is the belief that someone can be more than what is imagined possible. It is the belief that even with impossible situations alternative viable solutions can be found. It is cheering on the deflated spirit, adding light to the fading wick of will, to regenerate energy for new hope. It is providing a little relief by being there to help someone push forward out of the rut. Reaching out to others with words of encouragement spreads kindness. It looks outside of self in concern of another to re-channel the focus toward positive energy and hope.

Words of encouragement state words of beliefs such as “I know” telling someone that “it will” be because you know it can be. It is addressing failure or a challenge as not being the stopping point but a valley from which one can provide hope for another heading up again toward the next high point or goal.

Can you find someone who needs to be lifted up today and cheer them on?

@cultureofkind


Find these books and gifts on Amazon!

Gifts and Books
Encouragement: The Unexpected Power of Building Others Up
by Larry Crabb and Dan B. Allender PLLC

DiverseBee 60 Pack Assorted Motivational Cards – Inspirational and Kindness Mini Note Cards, Gratitude Encouragement Card Set with 60 Unique Motivational Quotes (Business Card Size and Blank Back)
by DiverseBee

Books
The Joy of Encouragement: Unlock the Power of Building Others Up
by David Jeremiah

Encouragement for Today: Devotions for Everyday Living

by Renee Swope, Lysa TerKeurst, Samantha Evilsizer

Encouragement Changes Everything: Bless and Be Blessed
by
John C. Maxwell

Music
The Power of Encouragement
by Seeds Family Worship

The Precious Moments Song Collection:
Songs filled with love and encouragement
Maranatha Music

The World’s Favourite Praise & Worship Songs
Various artists

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