Playdates with God: Rich in Books

A couple weeks ago, Teddy came down to breakfast and told us he had a dream that his brother stole a gorilla from the zoo. It reminded me of this book:



It was one of Jeffrey’s favorites when he was a wee one. I have a box of books stashed in his closet that I couldn’t bear to part with when his bookshelf started growing heavy with fat volumes. In my mind’s eye, I imagine myself reading these books to my grandchildren—making the same goofy noises and pointing out subtleties in the pictures like I used to with my boys.

When Teddy told us about his dream, I went to the box and pulled this one out. Then I read it (well, there aren’t many words, so we scrolled through the story pictures together) to my two tall boys over breakfast.

They were slightly amused. But captivated. “I remember that book,” Jeffrey said. And they let me go through the entire story. I only got a little teary.

That naughty monkey.

Books are the fabric of our lives.

My playdates have had to keep close to home since Teddy’s surgery. Even though he’s doing much better, I haven’t wanted to leave him for long. Fortunately for me, I have a lot of friends who are writers. And they send me books. Lately, I’ve been immersed in words and story.

It’s a good thing.

I wanted to share a few with you.


Pure Eyes, Clean Heart: A Couple’s Journey to Freedom from Pornography by Jen and Craig Ferguson

Today is the official launch date for Jen and Craig Ferguson’s important book. I’ll be sharing more about this one on Thursday, and hosting a giveaway; but here’s what I said about it in my amazon review: “As a mother of two teenage sons, I am grateful for the brave hearts who speak out about this very real, very common problem. Jennifer and Craig Ferguson give us both sides, shedding light on areas most couples would rather keep in the dark. They share their journey candidly, in the hopes that others will benefit from the difficult journey they traveled. All through this book, the Ferguson’s love for God and their desire to serve him with their story is evident. It’s a story led by Love, illustrating the healing power of Biblical truths.”

Fierce Convictions: The Extraordinary Life of Hannah More: Poet, Reformer, Abolitionist by Karen Swallow Prior

I just received this one two days ago and have only read the preface, but I am excited about it. Have you read Karen’s first book, Booked? Woman can write. She’s smart and witty and well-read and just has an amazing voice. This one has not yet released, but you can pre-order it now.

50 Women Every Christian Should Know: Learning from Heroines of the Faith by Michelle DeRusha.

I’m still reading this one. I’ve made it part of my quiet time in the mornings to dip into a different heroine’s life. I’m not going in order, just opening the book to whichever page the Spirit chooses. And the pages keep speaking to me, to my life, to this crazy world we live in.

Secrets from My Silent Eden by Paul Ogden

Dr. Ogden graduated high school locally with one of my best friends, who bought this book for me. Now Professor Emeritus of Deaf Studies/Deaf Education Programs at California State University, it’s the story of growing up deaf at a time when the world was not very sensitive to disabilities. It’s a fascinating read and Ogden’s voice is sweet and intelligent. I hope I get to meet him one day.

The River Caught Sunlight by Katie Andraski

The only fiction book I’ve read lately was a much-needed Sabbath for my brain. Katie is one of my online friends and I’ve always admired her voice. This is her first novel and its based on her experience as a publicist for a Christian publisher. Her own experience lends authenticity to the story and gives us a peek inside the sometimes not so black and white world of Christian publishing. I enjoyed the way Katie presents some hard issues, giving us permission to wrestle with them ourselves.

When More is Not Enough: How to Stop Giving Your Kids What They Want and Give Them What They Need by Amy L. Sullivan

This little book is a gem. If you’re familiar with Amy’s blog, you know about her heart for mission. This book is packed full of tips to help shape your kids into compassionate world-changers and resist the lure of our gadget-soaked culture.

For the Love of God: A Woman’s Guide to Finding Faith and Getting Grace by Jenny Lee Sulpizio.

I was privileged to endorse this book. Here’s what I said, “Jenny Sulpizio is, indeed, a woman who is willing to share her journey, her struggles, and her testimony to help others in their spiritual walk. With her characteristic humor and grace, Jenny unwraps the elements of faith and gives us a practical guide to stepping deeper into the Mystery. With helpful reading assignments and growth-provoking questions, For the Love of God: A Woman’s Guide to Finding Faith & Getting Grace is a must read for anyone who desires a rich God-life.”

This book would make a great gift for young women with young faith.

Playdates with God: Having a Childlike Faith in a Grown-up World by Me.

Yes, I’m re-reading my own book. I’ve found I need reminding of some of the lessons writing it taught. And tomorrow is the official launch date!! If you’re reading along with me and would like to help spread the word in this week of weeks, let me know? I’d love to do an interview or guest post for you. And thank you.

This isn’t the full exhaustion of my reading list, but I’ll stop here. We are rich in books and that makes us very rich indeed. I can’t think of a better playdate than to sit with a good read in a comfy place with my trusty dog curled up in my lap.

Some things never change.


Playdates with God: Having a Childlike Faith in a Grown-up World officially releases tomorrow! I want to thank this community for their company and encouragement over these long miles. And let you know … it’s not too late to order your copy!

Every Monday I’ll be sharing one of my Playdates with God. I would love to hear about yours. It can be anything: outside, quiet time. Maybe it’s solitary. Maybe it’s loud and crowded. Just find Him. Be with Him. Grab my button at the bottom of the page and join us:




  1. says

    Congratulations on your book release, Laura! I can’t wait to check it out. And thanks so much for serving up all these other recommendations. I’m a mom of three sons, so the Ferguson’s book sounds especially interesting to me. As usual, I always appreciate your linkup here, my friend!

  2. says


    It is so beautiful here! LOVE IT! And I just love your heart and your willingness. So honored to be launching a book alongside you. One day, I hope I get to hug you so that maybe I can convey how much love and appreciation I have for you.

    Much love,

  3. says

    Gorgeous new site!!!

    Thanks for showing these titles. A good stack to have on the nightstand. And! Peggy Rathmann is great! I’ve read Officer Buckle and Gloria so many times. It’s a good book to cheer myself up. 🙂

  4. says

    I have a box of kids books too (okay, more than one box) stored away that I couldn’t bear to part with either. Some I leave out for visiting children, but some are tucked away for future grandchildren yet-to-be-conceived.

    I love seeing your stack of books here, and seeing your OWN book here, too. Praying especially today for Jen and Craig. What brave souls they are! May the Lord bless their work with peace and healing for many. And may your launch tomorrow be a wild success!

  5. says

    Laura, what a BEAUTIFUL new site… makes me want to stay and play a bit;) I’m anxiously awaiting my copy of PlayDates—I ordered it last week! So thrilled for you and proud of your perseverance in putting word to page. May Jesus do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine as your book launches tomorrow. For His glory!!! Blessings to you, friend.

  6. says

    Miss Laura!

    What beauty – as always – in your new design. (Yay! Lyla!)

    That’s one of our favorite books too. This summer we sorted books and I also kept back several titles. I’m sneaky and use them on occasion as writing prompts for home education creative writing. Those are the stories that flow easy because he’s so familiar with the characters. 😉


  7. says

    Love the clean look of your site Laura, its lovely. And it’s just like you to promote a whole host of author’s book when yours is launching tomorrow. Can’t wait to join you in the celebration. Numbers don’t celebrate unleashing your gift into the world, don’t let them bully you into thinking they are more important than beating hearts. xoxo

  8. says

    Such a sweet post, Laura. Now that I’m a “mimi” with 6 grandlittles, I have two shelves of books – the two lowest levels – just for them. Your new bloggy look is so very lovely – just like you. And the blue flower is perfect. I’m been slowly reading “Playdates with God” – and it’s annotated like crazy. Much to read, savor, and contemplate in each chapter. Beautiful – simply beautiful.

  9. says

    I love books! And so, I’m always interested in what other people are reading. Thanks for this great list – and your book, too! Can’t wait!

    When I was reading the first part of this post, about your boys and the childhood book, and about getting a bit *misty* when you re-read it to them, it brought something to my mind. Oh yes, I understand. Can I share something that was like that moment for me? (Say yes, I’m going to anyway! LOL!) My oldest son just got married in November of last year, and unbeknownst to me, his wife chose a reading from a children’s book. Imagine my surprise at the rehearsal when I realized that it had been a favorite of our family when my sons were young. It was called, “I Like You” by Sandol Stoddard Warburg. Hearing the precious and simple words again, uttered in the setting of the joy of my oldest son’s marriage, I cried. Certainly not for the last time – I bought stock in Kleenex – but it was perhaps the first sweet, sweet moment.

    “I like you
    And I know why
    I like you because
    You are a good person
    To like.”


  10. says


    Glad to hear Teddy is improving…praying God heals him completely and encourages you all during this time….Thanks for sharing your list and your book is inspiring me to play more…((hugs))

  11. says

    I am so slow to digest books these days, every idea seems to be too big for my mind, so I’m trying to enjoy littler things. I’m noticing little lines in a novel by Wendell Berry like, “her mind was yeasty” and ” it was a hospitable house.” Little phrases that click. I wonder how a child would celebrate a book launch? It seems like such an unbearably grown up thing. I hope you’ll find some moments of deep joy and freedom this week.

  12. says

    Yay for book launching! I am a little bit behind the boat, but would love to share your book on 7DT. Perhaps on Oct 23rd for #EverydayJesus (and I would love to do a giveaway too.) Hook me up with your guest post and I will make it happen 🙂

    PS: I ordered my copy last week and can’t wait to dig in. Congrats, sweet friend!

  13. says

    Oh, I love the “Good Night, Gorilla” book!! Peggy’s book, “10 Minutes to Bedtime” is another favorite. I have it on one of our guest beds for their good night pleasure!! The child in all of us!!
    Thanks for such a great array of recommended books. Especially yours!!! : )
    Glad I came by, ~ linda

  14. says

    I really enjoyed the list of books you shared here. I literally took notes as I read. I am excited for you to have launched your book! Yeah! So many choices to read, but yours will be next on my list to purchase and peruse ( as will be some of the ones you shared above). 🙂 I am starting a new aspect of my blog for reviews of great books to add to our libraries. I look forward to spending time with yours.
    I pray that God will grant you favor as your words soar for His Glory and that you will be reminded, as you read the testimony of faith you penned, that He is able to do exceedingly, abundantly, above and beyond all we could ever ask, think, dream or desire.
    Many Blessings,


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