One of my favorite times each year is our Northwest Ministry Network Youth Pastors and Leaders Summit. One of the MANY reasons I so enjoy this weekend is this happens to be the time for the annual book exchange with my best friend, and fellow book critic, Ryan Smith. We typically pick one of our favorite books that we have read in the past year (one that the other person has not yet read – which makes the selection that much more difficult to make). Here are our swaps so far…

* 2012: I gave him Roger Archer’s Boys of Summer (sports history) and he gave me Richard Foster’s Prayer: Finding the Heart’s True Home (theology)
* 2011: I gave him Alan Hirsch’s The Forgotten Ways (missiology) and he gave me Atul Gawande’s A Checklist Manifesto (leadership)
* 2010: I gave him Thom S. Rainer and Art Rainer’s Simple Church (leadership) and he gave me Timothy Keller’s The Prodigal God (theology)
* 2009: I gave him Dallas Willard’s The Divine Conspiracy (theology) and he gave me CS Lewis’ The Great Divorce (fiction)

I hope this tradition lasts for many years to come. So, what do these selections say about us? The one who gives? The one who receives? Have you read any of these books? Are there any books that you think should make the list in future years?


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