Does anyone else struggle to know what to give on Valentine’s Day? I’m not really a “romantic” sort of person — I’d rather give (or receive) something nice but useful, like beautiful Scripture art or something for a favorite hobby, than chocolate or a stuffed bear. (Though I admit flowers are always nice, as long as you’re not allergic!) I’d rather share a gift that will truly benefit the person than just another dust-collector, something that will bring them pleasure and offer help in some way.
Books are always a great gift idea, no matter what the occasion or recipient. They’re useful and practical, with a dash of optimism — offering hope or help, comfort or camaraderie, adventure or assistance. Even better, they’re one of the few gifts that can be given to anyone of any gender, at any age, in any level of acquaintance, from coworker to good friend to spouse.
So, with Valentine’s Day coming up soon, I thought a book gift guide might be in order. It doesn’t matter whether your valentine is a parent, a child, a friend, or a spouse . . . here are a few great book ideas that will show you care and want the best for your loved one. (Disclaimer: contains affiliate links.)
Books to encourage them spiritually:
- A Gospel Primer: Learning to See the Glories of God’s Love — a book that distills the gospel into bite-size truths for the friend who is hungry to savor the gospel and plumb the depths of God’s love
- The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions — a book of meditations and prayers filled with rich truths about God, for the friend who yearns to have deeper fellowship with God
- Voices from the Past: Puritan Devotional Readings — a book of 365 page-a-day devotions from some of the most well-known Puritans, for the friend seeking to establish a regular time with God
- Habits of Grace: Enjoying Jesus through the Spiritual Disciplines — an encouraging book on knowing God better, for the friend who’s tired of striving for perfection but eager to continue growing spiritually
- Bonus: add a small moleskine journal or rhodia pad, and a pack of fineliners or microns
Books to offer hope and comfort:
- Hinds’ Feet on High Places — a gorgeous illustrated version of a favorite Christian allegory that any friend would savor, as it reminds them of God’s unchanging goodness and mercy
- Touching the Hem: a Biblical Response to Physical Suffering — a message of true hope for the friend slogging through the depths of a life-changing illness (don’t forget the free study guide here!)
- A Place of Healing: Wrestling with the Mysteries of Suffering, Pain, and God’s Sovereignty — a truth-filled volume (from Joni Eareckson Tada) for the friend fighting for purpose and joy in the midst of suffering
- Hope When it Hurts: Biblical Reflections to Help You Grasp God’s Purpose in Your Suffering — a beautiful, hope-filled book for the friend who feels soul-weary from a long season of struggle
- Bonus: add a few comfort goodies like chocolate, fuzzy socks, or a bouquet of their favorite flowers
Books to show your ongoing support:
- Called to Create: a Biblical Invitation to Create, Innovate, and Risk — a book that offers eternal value and biblical guidance for the friend pursuing creative or entrepreneurial endeavors
- Adorned: Living Out the Beauty of the Gospel Together — a “Titus 2” guide to fuller meaning and deeper relationships for the friend yearning for transformation and community
- A Retrospect: the Story Behind My Zeal for Missions — a firsthand account (from J. Hudson Taylor) of God’s ongoing faithfulness, which would greatly encourage any friend in full-time ministry
- Lit! A Christian Guide to Reading Books — an in-depth consideration for the introspective or book-loving friend of how to get even more out of their favorite book genres and topics
- Bonus: add a small bag of their favorite tea or coffee, or a gift card to a nearby coffee shop
What books would you love to give (or receive) this Valentine’s Day?