books I like

theologia germanica – anonymous

This is my primary influence. I feel like I could (and will) spend the rest of my life returning to the pages of this book and what they say about our life in Christ. There’s certainly things in there I disagree with, but I find it fantastic.

grace upon grace – john kleinig

This is my secondary influence for what I’m trying to do here. It’s a modern, accessible, Word-soaked book that has been tremendously edifying for me. The kind of book you finish and think “I never want to forget the things I read here.”

the interior castle – theresa of avila

Theresa does an excellent job at speaking of the role of her mysticism in the context of her faith. She is so careful when it comes to discerning True and false light and she stresses so much that mystical experience is entirely of grace. God owes no one any experience, neither does he love more the one to whom he does give experience. That being said, it’s not the first book I’d recommend. Even though she does a good job stressing grace, I think that the focus on experience and a lack of Christological focus takes this down a notch for me.

on loving God – bernard of clairvaux

Amazing work. A bit like an ancient Desiring God by John Piper. Bernard is a safe pair of hands and a beautiful writer. This work is only ~40 pages but it’s dense with meaning. This and the Theologica Germanica are the two works I wish I read first.

pastoral care under the cross – richard c. eyer

Luther’s ‘Theology of the Cross’ is a powerful concept to delve into and is thoroughly shapes how I try to look at life. The antithesis of this, the ‘Theology of Glory’, is an easy trap to fall into as we look at Christian mysticism. This book is very accessible compared to other works on the Theology of the Cross and deals with life at its hardest, with Eyer’s reflections on his life as a hospital chaplain.

my goodreads for books in the mystical tradition I’ve read here (be warned, not all recommended. I’d go for the Big Book of Christian Mysticism if this is all foreign to you. Or Grace Upon Grace).

hoping to read:

  • Tauler (currently reading Meditations on Christ’s Passion slowly)
  • True Christianity by Johann Arndt
  • Julian of Norwich
  • John of Ruysbroeck (update: read now. Cool guy, but quite difficult to read)
  • Henry Suso (maybe)