The Perfect Father’s Day Gift – Note to Self – And a Giveaway!

If your husband is a reader – this is the perfect gift for him! If your husband is not a reader – this is the perfect gift for him!  And when he’s done reading it – you should read it too!!!  I’ll tell you why in just a second but first let me back up 18 years!
18 years ago, I was a nervous freshman from Ohio, at the Moody Bible Institute in Chicago.  Being the social butterfly that I am, I quickly made friends with a girl named Jen from Germany (who later became my roommate) and a group of guys from our “brother” floor – whose ring leader was named Joe Thorn (the author of the book I’m about to share with you).  Now stick with me here – cause I’m trying to give you 4 years of history in 15 seconds! 
Joe is to the left of Jen in the green.  I’m on the far right. 
This group of guys was intriguing – all they wanted to do was debate theology  – or – laugh (2 of my favorite things to do)!  We went from very serious deep conversations to laughter about the most light hearted things in 2 seconds flat.  While my classes at Moody taught me many new things – it was my talks with Joe and his friends that introduced me to Martin Luther, John Calvin and Puritan Paperbacks.  Over lunch and dinner in the school cafeteria, they taught me how to handle God’s word correctly as they challenged all of my preconceived notions of scripture. 
Let me put it bluntly – Joe Thorn made me squirm…he made me run to my dorm room and flip through my Bible trying to prove him wrong.  He made me read books by RC Sproul, listen to radio programs by Michael Horton and James Boice and go to my commentaries and concordances trying understand these deeper concepts of God that he spoke about. 
So to make a long story short, my roommate Jen fell in love with Joe and here I am in their wedding!
And it is no surprise to me that now Joe Thorn sits across the table from people like John Piper
Joe is on the far left – John Piper is on the far right.
Joe is now a church planter in Chicago where his wife homeschools their four children.  His newly published book is a must read!  And I’m giving one away today!
Note to Self is a rich theological and practical guide to life.  While we need our pastors to preach to us on Sunday mornings – we need to be preaching to ourselves on Mondays through Saturdays!  In one hundred and thirty seven pages (this is short and an easy read for readers and non-readers!) and 48 short chapters, he takes us through all facets of life and applies the gospel.
Joe has a unique ability to pack a powerful punch with just a few words.  Let me give you a few examples:
“Let’s be honest, the reason you do not experience the joy you read about in Scripture is because your heart is divided, and your interests are spread thin.”

“You should see everything in your life as grace that accompanies your salvation.  For such things do not come from a Judge, but your Dad.”

“Take note – your view of Jesus tends to shrink over time…This is probably why the church is shrinking in North America – because small Jesus does not inspire awe, command respect, lead to worship, or compel us to talk of him (much less suffer for him).”

“The more robust, the more detailed your theology, the more humble you should become. Why? Because you did not figure God out; he revealed himself to you.”

“Sin, your sin in particular, should make you recoil.  Yet, because you are so familiar and comfortable with your sin, you hardly even blush at most of it.  Revulsion will only come when you see the holy, just, and good character of God in contrast to yourself.”

“It’s as if amassing feelings of guilt becomes a perverted kind of penance in which you pay for your transgression by making yourself feel bad – as if your guilt is a means of getting clean.”

“This is grace that God has given us a clear and understandable word.”

Joe Thorn’s book Note To Self, which is priced at around $10, would make the perfect Father’s Day gift!  It has a verse for mediation that starts each chapter that makes it a perfect daily devotional.  It’s a quick life-changing read that I hope you have the joy to experience!
And I have the opportunity to give one away here!!! 
To enter to win simply leave a comment below!  For extra entries Facebook or tweet the link to this giveaway!!!  This giveaway will run through Saturday, June 11th at 9pm.

Walk with the King!


  1. Wow, what a great story! And it sounds like a great book! It would be PERFECT for my man!! He is a reader and loves theology (shouldn't we all? it's simply the study of God!)!

    Thanks for this opportunity!

    crystaljop at gmail dot com

  2. My husband would love this book! Even if I don't win it in this giveaway I will go buy it! It sounds terrific. My husband loves facts and reminds me of you when you ran back to your dorm room trying to prove him wrong.
    Cynthia Kilburg

  3. This sounds like a wonderful book – I wonder if my husband would notice if it's been "pre-read?" What a gift you had to learn from such a man!

  4. I'd love a chance for a copy!

    Don't you love all those "small world" connections… amazing.

  5. This book sounds great for my husband! He is our church youth pastor and loves books like this. Thanks!

  6. I would love to give this book to my husband, and also read it myslef right afterward.I might even sneak a peek over his shoulder every now and then while he is reading it.=)

  7. That would be a great book to add to our library! My husband is a huge fan of Mars Hill/ReLit books and anything Acts 29 related since we are a part of an Acts 29 church plant ourselves!

    Even if I don't win it, I will have to get it for him!

  8. My husband would love this book! The way you described Joe reminds me so much of my husband with his desire to debate theology. 🙂

  9. I SO want to win this book for my hubby! He has only recently started reading…and he ALMOST reads more than I do now! I can't stop him! LOL! Thank you for the opportunity to win such a great book!

  10. I am always excited and proud to see a project by a fellow MBI alum!! God Bless the school that DL Moody Founded!!

  11. Entering the giveaway because *I* want to read it! 😉 Sounds intriguing! Thanks for sharing so much background, love details…blessings! 🙂

  12. Wow Courtney! What a wondeful story.. thanks for sharing your cute pics 😉 Joe sounds like an amazing man and I hope I can find his book to buy for my husband over here. Thanks for the excellent tip!

  13. I have a hard time getting my husband to read anything unless it's about farming! If you think he would read this I think it would be a great book to get him started on. Thank you for accepting my entry!

  14. sounds great! I think I'd get the Kindle version for my husband to read while he's riding public transit.

  15. I would love to read this WITH my husband, so we can enjoy some deep, theological discussions. Haven't been having enough of those lately. Thank you Courtney!

  16. Wow. Funny you said "While we need our pastors to preach to us on Sunday mornings – we need to be preaching to ourselves on Mondays through Saturdays!". Just this past Sunday our pastor talked about "1/2 Christians". Full blown on Sunday, but what about after we leave the church on Sunday and through the week until we arrive back the next Sunday morning. Very interesting.

  17. It sounds wonderful! I would love a chance to win this for my husband! thank-you Courtney!

  18. Hey Courtney. Please add me in on the giveaway. Loved every one of the quotes here and have experienced to them be true in my life also. I just posted about how we have put God in a little box for far to wrong. My favorite washis quote about a "small Jesus". My hubby is not a reader, but I read constantly. I know this would be a great conversational piece with Him. And would be a great gift. Thanks

  19. Thanks Courtney and Joe for this great giveaway 🙂 I would love to win this for my man!!

    jbaehrel at hvc dot rr dot com

  20. This sounds like a great book for the whole family! I just found your blog – congrats on being a contender for #1 Faith blog! Looking forward to reading more.

    From a sister in Christ, homeschooling mom of 18 years.

  21. My hubby just asked for a new book – this one sounds GREAT. Thanks for all the inspiration & tools Courtney!

  22. I hope it is okay to enter the contest even though I'm overseas!! That sounds like a great read!

    janahoskins at agapeeurope dot org

  23. Sounds like a great book. I think both of us would enjoy this. But I'll let him read it first. =)

  24. This book looks great & as always you have given a sweet peek into your life and a glimpse of true Christ followers doing what they are supposed to be doing… imitating Christ! My husband would enjoy this book!
    & thank you for your blog!

  25. Just the excerpts made me squirm! I might read it BEFORE giving it to my husband!! Thanks for letting us know about such a blessed resource.

  26. Just reading the excerpts made me squirm? How wrong is it to read it BEFORE giving it to my husband? Thank you for sharing such a blessed resource!

  27. It takes my hubby a long time to read a book (mainly because it's not his favorite thing to do). So I would probably devour the book first, and then give it to him!

  28. Wow! We would love a copy of this! It looks like it is a text that will make us think and have us running back ot our bibles too!

  29. Thanks for the giveaway! Loved reading about your connections with the author.

    This sounds like a great book, and one that we all should read.

  30. This sounds like an amazing book! I think my husband and father in law would love this book. They are both leaders in our church and we talk about these subjects daily! Thanks so much for offering this giveaway, but also for letting me know this book is out there!

  31. Thanks for the opportunity to give my husband this book! We are blessed to be the parents of 7 wonderful children, who we are raising up for the Lord. As a father, I'm sure my husband would really appreciate a chance to read it and further teach our children through it! Carol

  32. You are very kind, Courtney. You, Jen, Shannon, and a few others on your floor were a big spiritual encouragement to many of the guys on my floor.

    I hope the winner enjoys the book. If her husband isn't much of a reader the book works well as a daily reading/devotional that can be read together.

    Blessings to you, Keith, and the kids!

  33. Courtney, thank you so much for your blog and give-away opportunities! Sounds like a book for our teen girls as well as their parents! =)

  34. I would love to give this to my husband. How wonderful that you know the author! I bet it is a great read.

  35. Would love to win this book for my husband. He is not a reader so usually I highlight important things I want him to read. this sounds great for him. Can you buy this at Amazon??

  36. Looks good Courtney! Thanks for sharing this with us. By the way, the GMG session this go round is even better than before. Sally is wonderful! Thank you for your ministry!Lyn

  37. Wow – I'd love to have a copy of this for my hubby (and myself!).

    jksteelefam at gmail dot com

  38. OK, today is my first to ur blog. I have been voting for you and Sally Clarkson on that blog site for several days now. Today I clicked you & the post of Joe Thorns spoke to my Heart, yep I needed to gaze my eyes on those in my face quotes. And w/pleasure post on my FB with a few of those quotes today!!! Sure I would like Joe's book for my Handsome Hubby, but also for that book to be in our Home. I LOVE how God speaks to us in Endless Ways. He used you today for me ~ Thx U & Joe ! 😉

  39. This sounds like an interesting (and much needed) read for both my husband and myself. Thank you for the giveaway!

  40. My husband isn't a father yet…so I would LOVE to get it for my wonderful Dad. And then I will borrow it from him to read it too!

  41. I know there have been times when my husband or even myself are giving advice to another person and wish that we could just tell ourself that, but there seems to be so many walls that stop us from "preaching to ourselves". Thank you for this post.

  42. Courtney!!! Great book recommendation and giveaway idea 🙂 Would love to give my husband this in addition to his current Father's Day present! Also shared it on facebook so others can get connected to your blessing of a blog! Keep on walking with the King 🙂 Thanks for your encouragement and being a tool for God!

    spershall at sbcglobal dot net

  43. Aaaaaaahhhhhhh!!! AAAAAHHHHHHHH!! My hubs would probably faint if we had this! He is a hardcore apologetic and goes to Michael Horton's Wednesday night Bible study with Kim Riddlebatger at Sunkist Reformed. YAY!!!!! Thanks so much for the giveaway and opportunity to win this awesome resource!!

    Soli Deo Gloria!
    Melanie (

  44. Wouldn't this be so great for Father's Day? Thanks for offering a giveaway!

    (and such cute photos of you 'from back in the day' — it doesn't look like you've changed at all, BTW!)


  45. This would be the perfect Father's Day gift for my husband! He is not much of a reader, but when he does pick up a book it is usually one on theology. Thanks for hosting!


  47. Ok, I will be honest. I want this book! I hope I win but if not, it's already in my cart at Amazon. Thanks so much Courtney for telling us about it.

  48. Wow, using guilt as a means to feel cleansed of our sin, that was convicting. I have totally done that. I'm definitely interested in this book!

  49. My guy friends at Moody have been SO wonderful in the same spurring ways. And I suspect that some of my favorite friends to be challenged, informed or encouraged by are going to follow a similar path of leadership!

    and I am stoked to brag about both of you being graduates of my school. = )

    P.S. The second guy from the left–how did he get away with that hair here?!

  50. Thank you for the oppertunity – I would love to give this book to my husband and then read it too!

  51. We're celebrating fathers day on every third sunday of June to honor the hardworking fathers around the world. That's why father's day breakfast is one of the best to offer on our father. A special meal treat to the father comes from their wife can relieve all the the pain in terms of emotional that fathers undergo will easyly wiped out.

    You may check out this great video on YouTube for making a steak & eggs breakfast for your father. hope you'll enjoy it.

    father's day breakfast

  52. I would LOVE to win this book for my hubby! I plan to share this on my FB page, as well as the seminary wives fellowship FB page I belong to! I'm spreading the news (but I want it…lol)!

  53. I would love to win this book! I think my husband would enjoy it and do would I. Thanks for a chance to win. Djzmom06ATyahooDOTcom

  54. Courtney, this is so cool that you can promote Joe's book. Won't his socks be blown off when he sees how many of us want his new book!!!

  55. Courtney, Thank you for sharing. I am sure you know how lucky you were to be challenged and educated in that way. I wish I'd had that experience growing up. I'm sure we would love this book and that it would be very helpful for our home. Thank you for the opportunity to win it! Have a lovely day!

  56. My husband and I would love this book. My husband is a Pastor who loves to read. I will be buying this for him for Father's Day. Thank you so much for the gift advice. 🙂 Blessings,

  57. This sounds like a great book my husband would love! He has a gift for loving God with all his mind (which is something I'm grateful to learn from him) and loves to discuss theology. Thanks for the giveaway!

  58. Oh this book sounds AMAZING! I could really use something like this in my life right now!! Thank you for the opportunity:)

  59. Sounds like a great read. My husband loves to read, & so do I. We would enjoy this book so much. Thanks, Courtney, for your wonderful blog. You inspire me.

  60. The Farmer and I would so like to read this one — thank you, Courtney! For who you are — sold out for Jesus!

  61. Thank you so much for the chance to win this. This looks like an amazing book that would be great for my family to read. Thank you again.

    agent_beckster (at) yahoo (dot) com

  62. Sounds like a great book to add to my collection! If my hubby doesn't win this for Father's Day, I will joyfully purchase it for him : )

    I love knowing the history of things, great story.

    Thanks for sharing!

  63. Wow! This sounds like a great book. Thank you so much for the opportunity to win one. I think both my husband and I would love it. Thanks again!

  64. Thanks again for this opportunity! I just posted it on Facebook. 🙂 Have a blessed night!

  65. love the quotes you shared which show a little of how Mr. Thorn thinks & processes. I'm interested in the book–thanks for the chance to get it!

  66. This book sounds great! I think it sounds like a great read for anyone wanting grow closer to God

  67. Oh my goodness gracious, how cute are you, Courtney?! You look beautiful as a brunette AND a blonde. I've said it before though, and it bears repeating, your beauty shines from the outside AND the inside. My husband is a major bibliophile and I know he'd enjoy reading this book. Thanks for the chance.

  68. sounds like a wonderful idea to pass out to anyone. I would love a copy for our family but I'm also hoping that after reading it I will want to purchase it for others. Thanks for sharing!

  69. Would love to win this book! Sounds like the perfect read for several of my closest friends & family. Will spread the word about it. Thanks for sharing.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

I accept the Privacy Policy

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.