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Books that make great gifts for moms, dads, and grads

United Methodists have many choices of books to give to their mom, dad, and graduate. Photo by congerdesign via, CC0 Creative Commons.
United Methodists have many choices of books to give to their mom, dad, and graduate. Photo by congerdesign via, CC0 Creative Commons.

For United Methodists seeking to find just the right book to give the moms, dads, and grads in their lives, our friends at the United Methodist Publishing House and Abingdon Press have some wonderful suggestions.


The Blessings of Motherprayer by Barbara MahanyThe Blessings of Motherprayer: Sacred Whispers of Mothering by Barbara Mahany – Inspired by the author's Motherprayer: Lessons in Loving, this book features inspirational writings, prayers, and "a smidge of recipes" that invite mom to pay attention to God in everyday life, cradle her loved ones in prayer, and acknowledge the sacred lessons in loving.

Moms will enjoy these reflections on the role of motherhood and ways to focus on the holy in the ordinariness of daily life.

Heavenly Minded Mom: A 90 Day Journey to Embrace What Matters Most by Katie Bennett – Moms get pulled in many directions. Author Katie Bennett offers moms an opportunity to rise above the ordinary and see a bigger plan and purpose in their lives.
Ninety compelling meditations, Scripture readings, and invitations to journal and reflect will encourage mom to focus on God's bigger plans, and to claim a heavenly mindset towards her mothering tasks.

40 Days to a Joyful Motherhood40 Days to a Joyful Motherhood: Devotions and Coloring Book to Nourish Mom by Sarah Humphrey – After giving so much time and energy to their families, mothers can sometimes feel there is little left for themselves. But self-care is important, and for people of faith that means caring for one's soul.

These 10-minute daily devotions are a great fit for mom. The readings help her focus on important topics of motherhood like self-acceptance, self-care, generosity, presence, and forgiveness. Each devotional page also includes an opportunity to color and doodle, a wonderful way to pause for some quiet time before, after, or during a busy day.

Visit Abingdon Press's Motherhood Book Picks for more books mom might enjoy and some free samples.

Mom or Dad

Total Family MakeoverTotal Family Makeover: 8 Practical Steps to Making Disciples at Home by Melissa Spoelstra – Making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world is what United Methodists are all about. Parents can begin the disciple-making process in the home.

Moms and dads will learn how to cultivate in their children practices of our faith like prayer, Bible reading, church attendance, serving others, and Sabbath. No matter the ages of their children, parents will benefit from these practical tips to help kids grow as followers of Jesus.


Our Father: Where are the fathers?The Love of a DadThe Love of a Dad: Spiritual Thoughts for Fathers by James W. Moore – Every father needs good information, support, and tips on how to be a great dad. With inspirational thoughts, stories, and humor, United Methodist pastor the Rev. James W. Moore shares how dads can look to God as the best example of a loving, grace-filled parent.

Our Father: Where Are the Fathers? by Ernest S. Lyght and Jonathan D. Keaton – Two dads who are also retired United Methodists bishops share their experiences of the ups and downs of fatherhood. The authors examine their relationships with their own dads; their experiences parenting their children; the fathers of the church; and the lack of a father in many homes. They remind dads that God is the model on which they can rely to see how to nurture, hold accountable, and affirm those around them.


Dare to DreamWhat Matters: Words of Wisdom, Hope and Love by J. Philip Wogaman – A United Methodist pastor, ethicist and grandfather draws on his wealth of experience to draft this "letter" to the next generation. In a world where it can sometimes be hard to prioritize, he shares what truly matters. This book offers new graduates an opportunity to learn from an older generation when beginning a new chapter in life.

Dare to Dream: Creating a God-Sized Mission Statement for Your Life by Mike Slaughter – Graduation is a time to step out, start new things, and begin working toward our dreams. Sometimes, however, our goals can be too small.

United Methodist pastor the Rev. Mike Slaughter helps recent grads (and anyone else) find a God-sized mission for their lives. He then describes how to live it out prayerfully and enthusiastically. Also available in a youth edition.

The Grad's Pocket Guide to GreatnessIf You Know Who You Are, You Will Know What to DoIf You Know Who You Are, You Will Know What to Do: Living with Integrity by Ronald J. Greer – After years of life as students, recent graduates are faced with living into new realities at work, in their families, and with friends. Knowing who they are helps them find their place in every sphere of life.

United Methodist pastoral counselor Ronald J. Greer explores what it means to be people of both personal and moral integrity. His insights and guidance will lead graduates through a process to help them begin well.

The Grad's Pocket Guide to Greatness is a collection of uplifting, encouraging, and inspirational thoughts for graduates. This volume contains wise words from Scripture and from some of the most thoughtful people in history, including St. Francis, Mother Teresa, John Wooden, Eleanor Roosevelt, C. S. Lewis, and J. R. R. Tolkien. These pages are a source of strength and encouragement for recent graduates.

We'd love to hear about books that inspire you most. Contact us.

*Joe Iovino works for at United Methodist Communications. Contact him by email.

This story first posted on April 16, 2018.

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