"Life gets messy." I've been hearing that repeatedly the past year, and it's very true. Life is full of big decisions and seasons that present their own unique challenges, but books can effectively guide us. Whether you need a novel to help unwind from the day, or want some guidance on a specific issue you're facing, there are many wonderful resources available. I've been fortunate to have people in my life recommend books that proved very meaningful in helping me shape my process for making decisions and nurturing relationships. The books I've listed here have been particularly helpful and a blessing to me. I hope they are for you too!
For managing conflict (who doesn't need that skill set?): The Peacemaker, Ken Sande.
I took a 6-week class to study this book last year. Learning how to manage conflict is something everyone can benefit from, so I highly recommend this book as a guide for navigating conflict in a God-honoring way. It provides a biblically-focused approach to mending and maintaining relationships amidst conflict.
Conflict for families: Peacemaking for Families, Ken Sande with Tom Raabe.
Derrik and I read this book as part of our pre-marital counseling. I appreciated the practical examples in the book, and felt it was a great aid in giving us a glimpse of what to guard against in the years to come. This book is also part of the reading list for one of Derrik's classes this semester!
Preparing to move: After the Boxes are Unpacked: Moving On After Moving In, Susan Miller.
I'm still reading through this one, but so far I've found it helpful. I discovered this book on a library blog sponsored by Southern Baptist Theological Seminary's "Seminary Wives Institute". It didn't occur to me to seek out a book to help me work through all the different changes (both logistically and emotionally) that naturally come along with a move. This book gives good advice for preparing for a move, how to relate to the friends you're moving away from, how to establish your new life and connect with new friends in a new city.
If you feel there's not enough time in the day to get it all done: Shopping for Time: How to Do it All and NOT be Overwhelmed, Carolyn Mahaney.
Life just gets busier as life progresses, doesn't it? This book provided some practical tips for prioritizing time. What particularly stuck out to me was the idea of choosing the best deal of the season (in terms of priorities), e.g. in my current season, I have the opportunity to be involved at the Seminary and learn from the resources and events they offer while Derrik is a student. It's worth some ninja calendar skills to make the time to be involved while the opportunity is there.
For single women desiring marriage: Get Married, Candice Watters.
Candice has served as a type of distant mentor in my life for a few years, through reading her books and listening to her on podcasts. I found this book and her advice on Boundless.org to be very beneficial and formative in the time leading up to marriage.
I hope this short list gives you some good ideas to use or pass along to others!