The Weekend Review: Midnight Jesus and Walking With Ghosts

It's been a while since I've popped in with an edition of The Weekend Review, and that's been the product of a lack of disposable time. It's been a busy season around here, what with the move to the new place. But it's late September now, and we've managed to unpack most of the boxes before the leaves started turning, which was my secret goal. (Truth be told, Amber did most of the work; I try to give credit where credit is due.) There's still a lot to do at this house, but time has slowed a bit. In fact, it's slowed enough for me to bring you a few good links for your weekend reading pleasure. So let's slow down together. Shall we?

Here's the good stuff, a few good links and videos to watch, or ponder, or read while you're altering your own pace. See? I have you covered. Enjoy.


I may have discovered the Christian publishing industry's sleeper book of the year. Midnight Jesus is a candid, compelling, and well-written account of Jamie Blaine's work in the mental health care industry. Blaine is a character (a pinball-playing metalhead of a Character to be exact) and he's written a book that rings true. At times tender and gentle, at other times witty and sardonic, Midnight Jesus is a certain page burner.

This book isn't available until October 13, but you should pre-order your copy immediately. Trust me. You won't regret it.


Speaking of books you won't regret, have you read Amber's book Wild in the Hollow? Perhaps I'm biased, but it's beautiful, vulnerable, and intimate. The book reads well if you can conjure a southern drawl, but if you can't have no fear. [tweetherder text="Wild In The Hollow by @AmberCHaines is available on Audible! Hear the book read in her sweet southern drawl!"]Amber's book is available on Audible, and she is the reader![/tweetherder] Audible listeners follow this link and use your credits to download Wild in the Hollow. You'll love hearing Amber read in her own voice.


1. The Book of Common Prayer Lectionary--A Simple Daily Reading Plan.

A few folks have asked whether I have a daily plan for reading scripture. I do. It's my practice to follow the daily lectionary from the Book of Common Prayer, which leads you through the majority of the Bible over a two year cycle. Don't have a copy of the BCP? Thanks to the good folks at Crossway, the ESV website contains a link to the BCP readings of the day. Bookmark this link; everyday, the reading plan is updated.

2. Winn Collier and his Good Ol' Words.

I've been following Winn Collier's "Good Ol' Words" series, and let me tell you, it's good. This week he unpacked the word "preach." Don't miss it.

"In its truest sense, to preach means to announce (to declare) good news. To preach is not to blast wild, thoughtless words or to pretend to own a private hotline for divine truth. Rather, to preach is to refuse to stay silent when a soul is weary or a body undone."

3. Shawn Smucker Sees Dead People.

Shawn Smucker does nostalgia well. He does ghosts well, too. "Does he really see dead people," you ask?Maybe. You tell me.

"Then there is the ghost of my grandfather. I see him in everything here: the tables he built that we still use, the old pieces of equipment he patched and fixed and tinkered with. I see him in every $5 bill, because those are the ones he slipped to me straight from the cash box with a gleam of mischief in his eye. I remember him when his old friend John stops by every year. John, a friend of my grandfather, and whenever he visits I look over my shoulder because surely my grandpa must be around here somewhere?"

4. Tanya Marlow and Social Media Addiction.

Are you addicted to social media? Click, like; click, like; click, like. This is the experience of Tanya Marlow, and she entered the Recovery Room this week to share her story. Take a gander and ask yourself: do I need to come clean from social media addiction?

5. A Tiny Letter on The Quiet Sober.

Have you signed up for my Tiny Letter newsletter? In my most recent edition, I'm discussing "The Quiet Sober," how the slower pace of life can lead us into a deeper sort of inner sobriety. Sign up and follow along!


By now you've heard--my first book, Coming Clean, is available for pre-order (available October 27). Here's what you may not have heard, if you pre-order Coming Clean (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Givingtons)drop me an email to confirm, and I'll send you a copy of my FREE eBook Coming Clean|Austin Outtakes. In the Outtakes you'll read the backstory of the weekend I walked into sobriety, as told by the likes of Kristen Howerton, Preston Yancey, Heather King, and others.


I like the Muppets. I like imagination. This seems like a no-brainer for your Saturday.


Cover.FrancisThanks for stopping in! If you enjoy reading here, sign up to receive my bi-monthly Tiny Letter. In my most recent edition, I'm discussing the discovery of "The Quiet Sober." Sign up and receive access to my serial eBook, Dear Little Brothers.