About the Author

Bonnie Gray is the author of Sweet Like Jasmine, Whispers of Rest, wife, and mom to two boys. An inspirational speaker featured by Relevant Magazine and Christianity Today, she’s guided thousands to detox stress and experience God’s love through soul care, encouragement, and prayer. She loves refreshing your soul at...

(in)side DaySpring: things we love
& you will too!
Find more at DaySpring.com
(in)side DaySpring:
things we love
& you will too!
Find more at
Recent Posts

Reader Interactions


  1. Most recently, A Grace disguised by Jerry Sittser. I lost my nephew to suicide 6 months ago. Life in the present moment has become a gift to me.

    I too am a lover of Living by the Book.

    Also have loved Ann’s book One Thousand gifts and being a part of the Bloom’s book club! I am continuing to count.

    Blessings, Beth

    • My neice died is a car accident just 18 months ago and still we live from day to day. She was our maypole and without her we do not dance. But day by day we heal slowly. Our lives are shaped to a new normal.

      As for books – One Thousands Gifts – i to, am counting
      The Happiness Project – Gretchin Ruben
      The Road less Travelled – M. Scott Peck
      The Lively Shadow – Donald Murray

      novels –
      The Bonesetters daughter – amy tan
      Like bees to honey – Caroline Smailes
      After you’re gone – Maggie O’Farrell

      I have learnt that we only have this moment to live x

  2. Bonnie,
    This is a great list. I am going to be looking into many of these further. I greatly appreciated the last book, Plan B, that you gave me. It has spoken to me in so many ways. I highly recommend it to everyone out there. It is thought changing!
    Thanks again.

  3. A book that really helped me through a difficult time of believing God for a miracle is If You Will Ask by Oswald Chambers. It’s an in depth and unique study on prayer that really helped me understand what it meant to petition the Lord for something. Asking does not always mean getting. But it does lead to changing your heart and turning it towards Him.

    Thanks for your recommendations!

  4. I always enjoy reading book lists!

    The ones that come to mind for me are The Pressures Off by Larry Crabb, Streams in the Desert devotional, A Christian Woman’s Guide to Personality Types, Stepping Heavenward, and The Practice of the Presence of God. I know there are more but off the top of your head, there you go.


  5. I have read and reread Hinds Feet On High Places by Hannah Hurnard. Waking The Dead: The Glory of a Heart Fully Alive by John Eldridge got me through a tough season. Boundaries by Henry Cloud and John Townsend, very enlightneing for people -pleasers like myself. I could go on and on…

  6. Wow thanks for this. Every single one looks good. I especially appreciate the combination of a quick passage plus your own comments!

  7. Books were my best friend growing up, we moved around a lot so they were my constant companions. I wish I had thought to do a book journal! I know there are books that had a profound effect on my and I can remember passages from them but not the titles.
    I have to be careful though, I have a tendency to read books about the Bible and neglect my actual Bible reading,
    There are several on your list I’m going to have to find, Plan B I think will be the first one.

  8. The Attributes of God vol. 1 & 2 – A.W. Tozer
    Crazy Love – Francis Chan (and the one about the Holy Spirit, I can’t remember what it’s called)

  9. Oh… these look good I will have to look for them. I have read most of the Max Lucado books, but I am not sure of this one without going to the bookshelf and looking. Books are such friends and escape for me…

    The most recent that I have read that has truly helped me it True Faced: Trusting God and Others with Who You Really Are. Here is a link http://www.google.com/products/catalog?q=true+faced&um=1&ie=UTF-8&cid=3793107263503938600&sa=X&ei=Xfe1TZoyydXRAdG9uZsK&ved=0CDcQ8wIwAg#

  10. Hi,
    I want to tell you how much I’ve enjoyed your posts lately! Keep ’em coming!!
    I will certainly look for the titles you’ve mentioned- they do sound life-changing. In a time when maybe things weren’t changing fast enough, I found Mark Buchanan’s Spiritual Rhythm: Being with Jesus Every Season of Your Soul. It is reassuring to read about another’s seasons- and sometimes I just “check in” to see if I’m still where I thought I was. All of it (yours, his, Ann’s) has been a real gift. Thank you.

  11. Two books, both by Eugene Peterson: A Long Obedience in the Same Direction and Practice Resurrection. The first is one I’ve pulled off the bookshelf and read and re-read multiple times. The second is quickly becoming a favorite, one that is well underlined, highlighted and quoted.

  12. I really enjoyed reading “Radical” by David Platt. So life-changing and challenging! I have been convicted to leave behind much of the American dream I am so used to and start serving Christ in different contexts. Lord willing, my husband and I will be participating in a missions trip to Haiti come November. We are both really looking forward to seeing how God can use a couple of sinners (us) for His glory!

  13. Thank you Bonnie, I love hearing about books that changed lives.
    My amazon wish list has grown considerably bigger. =)
    One book that I read recently in the past few years was Richard Swenson’s book “Margin”. It taught me that I needed to intentionally slow down my life to make room for relationships.

  14. I love Changes that Heal…I need to read it again! More recently, I have loved A Million Miles in a Thousand Years by Donald Miller and One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. :0

  15. In a serious time of persevering, I read God on Mute by Pete Greig. This is a book you cannot presume to know what it will say by just checking the cover. Also I have loved Thomas Merton’s Thoughts in Solitude and Philip Yancey’s What’s So Amazing about Grace? Good stuff.

  16. “Humility” by CJ Mahaney and “What’s So Amazing About Grace” by Phillip Yancey are two treasures. Oh! And “Happiness is a Choice” by Minirith & Meier

  17. So true. God speaks to me thro media I understand best – Books. For me, some of them have been ‘Love Beyond Reason’ by John Ortberg, ‘Light in my darkest hour’ by Catherine Marshall, ‘All the way to heaven’ by Elizabeth Sherill….and quite frankly, your blog entries :-))), which are so pratically, many of which have ministered to me so personally. so THank you.

  18. Great blog as usual, Bonnie!

    Books were my friends, too. I had amazing adventures all from the top of the comforter in my bedroom, solving mysteries, and climbing mountains of my imagination. Reading saved me, too, in many ways.

  19. That’s just how I feel (about books being faithful friends). Andrew Murray has been one of the most influential authors in my life, especially through his Humility. I first read that in 2006, and it’s still right in front of me, great for going against pride, self-sufficiency, wanting the praise of people.

    Also, Tozer’s The Pursuit of God. Lots in there about humility, too. And death to self.

    Also, The Homesick Heart, by Jean Fleming. That one really helped me with my nearly unbearable aches for Home. Such a comfort and a companion, that book.

    The books that deepest in that “friend” kind of way are, for me, fiction: David Copperfield, Les Miserables, A Tale of Two Cities, Jacob Have I Loved, . . .

  20. Loved Tozer’s “The Pursuit of God”!

    Also, “Let Me be a Woman” by Elisabeth Elliot was so encouraging when I adjusting to married life.

  21. How do you choose? I read 80 books per year (give-or-take), and many of them have influenced me over the years!

    Favorites include: “Dare to Dream” by Florence Littauer, “Velvet Elvis” by Rob Bell, “Gifted Hands” by Dr. Ben Carson w/Cecil Murphey, and “A Scandalous Freedom” by Steve Brown.

    I would have to really sit and think for a while to come up with an answer for your question. But, I had to say that I just LOVED this article! Thanks for writing it! ((always love finding fellow avid readers! — and hearing their book recommendations, of course!)) 😉