Chris Fabry is an award-winning author and radio personality who hosts the daily program Chris Fabry Live! on Moody Radio. He has published more than sixty-five books, including movie novelizations, such as the recent bestseller War Room. We asked him to share five books that changed his life. In response to this challenge, Fabry said, “Choosing only five books is difficult for a reader like me, but these are the books that burrowed deeply into my soul and have stayed with me over time. I’m not trying to prove how spiritual or unspiritual I am. I’m being honest. Here we go.”
Hudson Taylor’s Spiritual Secret by Dr. Howard and Geraldine Taylor
When I became serious about my faith as a teenager, I read biographies of great missionaries. I also met missionaries who came through our little town, the place I refer to as Dogwood in my stories. I remember a moment while reading this book when I felt something similar to a light flash in my heart. The dependence Hudson Taylor had on God was the same kind of dependence I needed in my own life and was an option for me.
My Heart—Christ’s Home by Robert Boyd Munger
This is not a book; it’s a pamphlet, really. But it showed me that a book need not be lengthy to make a lasting impact. It packed a spiritual wallop in my life. For a period of time, I was involved with an InterVarsity group on a college campus—where I met my wife, Andrea—and we often carried a box full of these booklets because they made such an impact. The story is about giving Jesus full access to our hearts and our lives.
The Fight by John White
This is the first Bible study I studied on my own. I have a mental image of the cover in my mind. It was a no-nonsense, plain-spoken, real discussion of what the Christian life really is and isn’t. As Christians, we should not expect an easy life or that God is going to solve every problem simply because we pray and ask. God may complicate our lives, in fact. The fight is a sign of life, not of failure. God is calling us to something deeper, and if we will go with him, he will keep his promise to conform us to the image of his Son.
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
When my eighth grade teacher gave me a list of books to read over the summer, the first one I chose was Harper Lee’s book. I can still remember the library I walked into and the smell of that book in my hands. It changed me in ways I couldn’t imagine. It made me see from another’s perspective. It showed me what true courage looks like. It awakened in me the desire to live this way. I fell in love with Scout.
The Prince of Tides by Pat Conroy
This is probably the only list that includes both Hudson Taylor and Pat Conroy, but I’m shooting straight. When I first read this book, I felt the author was explaining part of my life to me. His story, profane and hyperbolic, was a personal attempt to make sense of his own life. After reading it, I knew I wanted to spend time and energy doing the same thing for others. I wanted to flesh out struggle, pain and hurt on the written page so I could understand what had happened as well as how God was ordering all of these events. This book is not for everyone, but it made a big difference in igniting my passion to write for publication.
Chris Fabry is an award-winning author and radio personality who hosts the daily program Chris Fabry Live! on Moody Radio. He is also heard on Love Worth Finding, Building Relationships with Dr. Gary Chapman, and other radio programs. A 1982 graduate of the W. Page Pitt School of Journalism at Marshall University and a native of West Virginia, Chris and his wife, Andrea, now live in Arizona and are the parents of nine children.
Chris’s novels, which include The Promise of Jesse Woods, Dogwood, June Bug, Almost Heaven, and Every Waking Moment, have won three Christy Awards and an ECPA Christian Book Award, but it’s his lyrical prose and tales of redemption that keep readers returning for more. He has also published more than 65 other books, including movie novelizations, like the recent bestseller War Room; nonfiction; and novels for children and young adults. He coauthored the Left Behind: The Kids series with Jerry B. Jenkins and Tim LaHaye, as well as the Red Rock Mysteries and the Wormling series with Jerry B. Jenkins.