what I’m into: September edition

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

what I read:

The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander was the best book I read all month. Actually, it was the best book I’ve read in several months. I’m still processing much of it, but it is eye-opening. It’s an unflinching indictment on our nation, and for me, it left me in a place of repentance for my attitudes about the whole issue of race in the justice system. Not that I didn’t believe racism existed in our justice system, but I think I was still clinging to a misguided sense of what that actually meant. I definitely didn’t realize the extent of the problem until I read this book and started researching it for myself. This should be required reading for every high school history and government class, and those of us out of school would do well to investigate it for ourselves and our children.

The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold was just as good as I remembered it. A very worthwhile re-read.

I didn’t expect to love Decoded by Jay-Z as much as I did. This was an utterly fascinating read.

I had some assigned reading from my kids’ doctor:  Solve Your Child’s Sleep Problems – Richard Ferber and The Challenging Child – Stanley Greenspan. They were nothing ground-breaking; I’m pretty sure he doesn’t realize how many books I’ve read on adoptive parenting, parenting traumatized children, sensory processing disorder, etc.

Red Letter Revolution – Shane Claiborne and Tony Campolo was an enjoyable and interesting read. I think I’m just so familiar with both of them and their stances on various topics, however, that I wasn’t particularly challenged. I’m glad to own the book anyway, and if you are unfamiliar with either of them, you may very well find this book challenging and potentially life-changing.


what I listened to:

This was a GREAT month for music. I can’t remember the last time there was this much good music out. My typical listening patterns are podcasts in the car, music at home, but this month it’s been music all the time, no matter where I am. I can’t listen to these albums enough.

Inland – Jars of Clay. Love, love, love this one. It was worth the wait. I’ve been playing it constantly.

I always buy a sophomore release with trepidation, especially if I absolutely loved the first album, but Heart by The City Harmonic is just as good as their first – maybe better, even. Is every day too much to listen to an album? I particularly like The City Harmonic for worship services. Not all bands are suited to all congregations, but this one suits ours. If you’re also a worship leader, they are worth a listen. These first two albums of theirs are taking worship music in a new direction – they don’t feel compelled to go your standard Chris Tomlin/Hillsong/Jesus Culture route that everyone else is emulating right now. We’ve already worked up one of the songs for Sunday mornings, and I’m sure several more are not far behind.

I Am Mountain by Gungor just came out last week, so I’ve added that one to my daily rotation as well. It’s crazy good, as always.

I’ve been streaming Dustin Kensrue’s new music, The Water & The Blood, for a little while now, and the album just came out yesterday. It is flat out amazing. Seriously. There would be no question that this would be my most recommended album…except for the previous three. I recommend all of them. I cannot choose.

Other really great albums I’ve been listening to: Your Grace Finds Me – Matt Redman, I Was Wrong, I'm Sorry & I Love You – Derek Webb, Fortunate Fall – Audrey Assad


what I watched:

Friday Night Lights – It’s fall, and thus it’s football season. I could write pages upon pages about how terrific this series is. I’ll spare you my assessments, except to say this: this is a nearly perfect television series. There are a couple missteps, sure, but it is beautifully written, beautifully acted, and beautifully filmed. The last ten minutes of this series are by far the best moments of television I’ve ever seen. Put it in your Netflix queue, and enjoy.

I’ve started several of the new fall tv offerings. I usually try to watch at least the pilot of most of the shows that interest me, and then I whittle down from there. I’m pretty excited about several of the new series, so I’ll give it a bit and see how attached I am after a month.


What were you into during September? Tell me below, or write your own post and link up with Leigh!

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