I believe besides the Bible the biographies of great men and women are the best sources of inspiration, instruction and examples. They not only teach lessons but also give us pictures that we can strive after. Moreover, they are in stories.
Autobiography of Hudson Taylor
The first missionary to the inland of China and founder of China Inland Mission; a most ordinary and simple man whom God used most extraordinarily; by far one of my favorite Christians of all time.
Autobiography of George Mueller (or Muller)
A man who set his goal in life to prove to reality of God by answered prayers; who ran two orphanages numbering 2,000 children without ever soliciting money; who had more than 20,000 recorded answered prayers; if you want to gain faith, read this.
Biography of Charles T. Studd by Norman Grubb
A graduate of Cambridge University; national sensation of Cricket player, who volunteered to go to China; later became the first missionary to Africa; a powerful story of him and his wife by their son-in-law.
Biography of William and Catherine Booth
I read a youth version of it, so would not recommend that particular version, but the story of these two founders of Salvation Army and their extraordinary relationship and dedication to God, and how they raised their children will inspire you.
The Story of A Soul: Autobiography of Therese of Liseux
A most remarkable story of a young nun who dies in her early 20s with no remarkable achievement but whose book—this book—makes her into a canonized saint in the Catholic Church within the shortest time after the saint’s death; a deeply moving story of simple and profound spirituality.
Autobiography of Charles Finney
An amazing story of the power of God about a lawyer who became self-claimed “advocate for God,” and brought the Second Great Awakening of America single-handedly.
In My Father’s House by Corrie ten Boom
A wonderful story about the family life of one of the most moving Christians of the WWII.
Heavenly Man by Brother Yun
An amazing and inspiring story of a Chinese Christian whom God used supernaturally and suffered supernaturally for the gospel.
Seven Story Mountain by Thomas Merton
A spiritual journey of an intellectual atheist who eventually became a monk and one of the most influential Christian voices of the last generation.
Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster
A modern classic which describes the major spiritual disciplines in easy-to-understand and non-threatening but profound ways.
Money, Sex and Power by Richard Foster (The title has changed since the original edi.)
Dealing with three perhaps most powerful issues that affect everyone’s life.
Spirit of Discipline by Dallas Willard
The book behind Celebration of Discipline; the theological underpinning of Celebration by a man whom Richard Foster considers his mentor.
Divine Conspiracy by Dallas Willard
Do you want to know where we are theologically, and why American Church as a whole is in trouble? Read this book. It will also give a comprehensive understanding of practical Christian theological.
Laugh Again by Charles R. Swindoll
Joy about Christian life.
Deeper Experiences of Famous Christians by James G. Lawson
A book on the topic.
THEOLOY AND APOLOGETICS
Almost any book by C.S. Lewis:
A great book for non-Christians or new Christians to find intellectual basis of their faith.
Problem of Pain
A treatise on the problem of suffering and God’s goodness.
Weight of Glory
A collection of great essays.
Only for those who like reading heady books and are philosophically oriented.
The Case for Christianity
A short philosophical treatise on the topic.
Darwin on Trial by Phillip E. Johnson
A powerful, intellectual rebuttal of evolutionism by the law professor of UC Berkeley.
The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel
A great book to get intellectual basis for Christian faith from an award winning journalist and a formal atheist.
CHRISTIAN LIFE, HOLY SPIRIT
Power Evangelism by John Wimber
A book about signs and wonders and evangelism by one of the most influential Christians of the last generation.
Power Healing by John Wimber
A down-to-earth book on how God heals and many questions about divine healing.
DATING AND MARRIAGE
Men Are From Mars; Women Are From Venus by John Grey
A non-Christian book, but most helpful in understanding each other.
Fit to Be Tied by Bill and Lynn Hybels
A transparent and therefore helpful confession of a world-famous Christian leader couple about their marriage struggles and triumphs.
Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas
Marriage is hard. One of the best ways to take it is as spiritual training. A most helpful book with ages of insight, as St. Francis of LaSales said to a young woman who asked whether she should get married, “If you want to serve Christ, stay single. If you want to become like Christ, get married.”
Passion and Purity by Elisabeth Elliot
This book may sound like one written from the 17th century, but it has wonderful insights.
Choosing God’s Best by Dr. Don Raunikar
The most helpful book I have read on dating. I Kissed Dating Good Bye is for high schoolers. This is for those older.
Book of Virtue Ed. by William Bennett
A best-seller and for good reasons; a great book to read to children each night.
Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis
One of my favorite novels, a wonderful reworking of the Greek myth of Psyche and Cupid.
Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis
A timeless classic; children’s story but also loaded with insights for adults.
The Man Who Was Thursday by G.K. Chesterton
A pleasure of a book, a spy novel but with deep Christian reflection underneath it all.
This Present Darkness by Frank E. Peretti
A sensation when it was published; a great suspense novel based on spiritual warfare; you will never look at life the same way.