The following resources are compiled by the leadership of SAF in order to help you grow individually on your own time. They are updated periodically. Please copy and paste the titles into your browser.  If you need help finding a particular item, please email us.  If you would like help establishing a personal growth plan, please connect with us!

Books for Personal Growth 

These titles focus on topics of spiritual growth and personal experiences.  All books are available at, unless otherwise noted. 
Changes That Heal
by Townsend and Cloud
In this ground-breaking book, Dr. Cloud takes the reader step-by-step through the four basic tasks of becoming mature image bearers of God.
Mental Health Resource Guide
A guide for addressing mental health concerns. The booklet lists providers in the San Antonio, TX area.
by Townsend and Cloud
Having clear boundaries is essential to a healthy, balanced lifestyle. A boundary is a personal property line that marks those things for which we are responsible.
Crucial Conversations
by Kerry Patterson, et al
A book that will deeply influence, motivate, and inspire you giving you the tools to handle life's most difficult and important coversations.
How to Have That Difficult Conversation
by Townsend and Cloud
Successful people confront well. But, most of us don't know how to have difficult conversations, and we see confrontation as scary or adversarial.
The Jesus-Centered Life: The Life You Didn't Think Possible, With the Jesus You Never Knew
by Group Publishing
You know Jesus, think he’s a nice guy, and you never forget his birthday. But the truth is…you want more than that. You’re bored. Exhausted. Tired of the grind. You’re done with hearing about Jesus in sermons. Reading about Jesus in devotions. You want to encounter Jesus—and know him for who he really is. You want to experience Jesus’ love, not just admire him. To become a follower, not just a fan.
Organic Outreach for Ordinary People: Sharing Good News Naturally
by Kevin G. Harney
When we really love something, we talk about it. This is true when find a great new restaurant, enjoy a sports team, or when we stumble onto a fantastic new product. We want to share the joy and tell others. We naturally “evangelize” and invite others to experience what we have found. Organic Outreach is about living the kind of life that draws people to Jesus. With three decades of outreach leadership, Kevin Harney provides insights and tools that will enable you to reach out to others and reveal the good news of a loving God in a way that fits your unique personality and calling. Learn how to set fear aside and experience the fruitfulness of sharing God’s love through authentic, organic outreach!
In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day: How to Survive and Thrive When Opportunity Roars
by Mark Batterson
You will look back longingly on risks not taken, opportunities not seized, and dreams not pursued. Stop running away from what scares you most and start chasing the God-ordained opportunities that cross your path. In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day is inspired by one of the most obscure yet courageous acts recorded in Scripture, a blessed and audacious act that left no regrets: “Benaiah chased a lion down into a pit. Then, despite the snow and slippery ground, he caught the lion and killed it” (2 Samuel 23:20 -21).
Release My Grip
by Kami Gilmour
Saying goodbye to a child as they leave the nest and learn to fly ushers parents into an emotional time of grief, joy and nostalgia. Release My Grip, by Kami Gilmour, offers inspiration and practical insight as she reveals the surprising truth she learned while knee-deep in this sacred season of parenthood.
Alter Girl
by Andrea Syverson
One woman’s journey in, around, and through the church on her way to Jesus Andrea Syverson was raised Catholic. As in really Catholic, from plaid jumpers to early-morning mass to meatless Fridays. And then Andrea did the unthinkable. She fell in love with a non-Catholic man, whose questions about her faith she simply couldn’t answer. What’s a good Catholic girl to do? Frequently whimsical, often profound, always honest, Andrea shares her spiritual journey—one that feels familiar to anyone seeking Jesus. It’s a sometimes jumbled jaunt from religion to relationship, from going to church to being the church. Whether you love church, are done with it, or are simply seeking a more authentic relationship with Jesus—Andrea’s story will speak to your heart.
Chasing Vines
by Beth Moore
In Chasing Vines, Beth shows us from Scripture how all of life’s concerns―the delights and the trials―matter to God. He uses all of it to help us flourish and be fruitful. Looking through the lens of Christ’s transforming teaching in John 15, Beth gives us a panoramic view of biblical teachings on the Vine, vineyards, vine-dressing, and fruitfulness. Along the way you’ll discover why fruitfulness is so important to God―and how He can use anything that happens to us for His glory and our flourishing. Nothing is for nothing.

Books on Theology and the Bible

These titles focus on theology, practical application, and Bible study. All books are available at, unless otherwise noted. 
Seven Deadly Spirits - The Message of Revelations Letters for Today's Church
by T. Scott Daniels
Cultural influences can impact the collective spirit or attitude of a congregation, either hindering it from becoming all God intends it to be or setting it free to glorify God.
The Bible For Everyone - Commentary - 35 volume set (great devotional reading 1 book at a time)
N.T. Wright
Westminster John Knox Press is pleased to present The Bible for Everyone Set. Written by internationally respected scholars, N. T. Wright and John Goldingay address and interpret Scripture from Genesis to Revelation in such a way that even the most challenging passages are explained simply and concisely.
Surprised by Hope
N.T. Wright
In Surprised by Hope: Rethinking Heaven, the Resurrection, and the Mission of the Church, top-selling author and Anglican bishop, N.T. Wright tackles the biblical question of what happens after we die and shows how most Christians get it wrong.
The Lost World of Adam and Eve - Genesis 2-3 and the Human Origins Debate
John H. Walton
For centuries the story of Adam and Eve has resonated richly through the corridors of art, literature and theology. But for most moderns, taking it at face value is incongruous. What if we've been reading Genesis―and its claims regarding material origins―wrong?
A Very Good God in a Badly Broken World
Dan Boone
At times the world seems full of evil and injustice. Another school shooting, a natural disaster, the innocent exploited—these are our headlines. The brokenness of the world causes us to question: Where is God in this?
Meeting God
Judson Cornwall
Cornwall discusses how we benefit from the ways that God met people where they were in their journey so that we can see how God is meeting us where we are in our journey. Using an academic study of the Bible, the reader is introduced to the closeness of God in life.
The Bible in 52 Weeks: A Yearlong Bible Study for Women
by Dr. Kimberly D. Moore
When you need to lift your spirits or tackle life’s challenges, the Bible is always there to offer guidance. This inspiring Bible study for women selects 15-minute daily readings for you, pulling the passages together with weekly reflections, discussion questions, and journaling space for recording your thoughts. With insightful commentary to lead you through the Bible over the course of the year, you can better understand God’s lessons and apply them in your daily life. Go beyond other Bible study guides and workbooks with: Themed readings―The verses chosen for each week tie together with themes that relate to modern women, like persevering through goals, moving on from mistakes, and more. Your favorite translation―The included reading plans work with any translation, so you can use your favorite Bible to connect with God more deeply. Study your way―Explore the interactive questions, Bible journaling prompts, and prayers on your own or in a group setting of any denomination.
Color: God's Intention for Diversity
by Carla D. Sunberg and Daniel Gomis. COMING SOON
When we talk about color in the church, we are talking about so much more than race and ethnicity—yet at the same time we cannot leave race and ethnicity out of the conversation altogether. As a white woman and a black man, Carla Sunberg and Dany Gomis have coauthored a harmoniously blended collection of reflections comparing a bride adorned in luxurious colors for her groom to the bride of Christ. Explore what it would look like for the bride of Christ to discover and use a full array of hues, both biblically and culturally. More than a book about skin tone, Color challenges the church to rise above a monochromatic perspective to see the fresh beauty of interweaving threads to complete the church bride’s adornment for her bridegroom. With a friendly, collaborative style and questions for reflection at the end of each chapter, Sunberg and Gomis encourage us to celebrate the vibrancy and intensity of the Christian life the way God designed us to live it—as filled with Color.
Liturgy of the Ordinary: Sacred Practices in Everyday Life
by Tish Harrison Warner
In the overlooked moments and routines of our day, we can become aware of God's presence in surprising ways. How do we embrace the sacred in the ordinary and the ordinary in the sacred? Framed around one ordinary day, this book explores daily life through the lens of liturgy, small practices, and habits that form us. Each chapter looks at something―making the bed, brushing her teeth, losing her keys―that the author does every day. Drawing from the diversity of her life as a campus minister, Anglican priest, friend, wife, and mother, Tish Harrison Warren opens up a practical theology of the everyday. Each activity is related to a spiritual practice as well as an aspect of our Sunday worship. Come and discover the holiness of your every day.

Resources for Mental Health and Wellness

Mental health management is part of our regular health management... at least is should be! Below are resources such as books, podcasts, and more, on mental health and wellness. If you are suicidal or experience a severe crisis, please call 911 now, or go to your nearest emergency room.  
Grace for the Afflicted: A Clinical and Biblical Perspective on Mental Illness
Matthew S. Stanford
Why has the church struggled in ministering to those with mental illnesses? Each day men and women diagnosed with mental disorders are told they need to pray more and turn from their sin. Mental illness is equated with demonic possession, weak faith, and generational sin. As both a church leader and a professor of psychology and behavioral sciences, Matthew S. Stanford has seen far too many mentally ill brothers and sisters damaged by well-meaning believers who respond to them out of fear or misinformation rather than grace.Stanford presents insights into our physical and spiritual nature and discusses the appropriate role of psychology and psychiatry in the life of the believer. Describing common mental disorders, Stanford probes what science says and what the Bible says about each illness.
The Biology of Sin: Grace, Hope, and Healing for Those Who Feel Trapped
Matthew S. Stanford
There are heated discussions happening on the conflict between science and faith. This disagreement tends to focus around three main issues, one of them being what causes our sinful behavior. The intense conflict has to do with biblically defined sinful behaviors and if there just might be a biological predisposition for these behaviors. The Biology of Sin speaks to this debate and hopefully brings some resolution to the conflict. As both a Christian and a neuroscientist, Dr. Stanford has seen scientific knowledge distorted to justify sinful behavior and perhaps more disturbingly, he has seen Christians misuse Scripture to demonize and alienate the very ones they should be reaching out to. He suggests that the underlying cause of this problem in the church is a lack of knowledge, both of basic brain function and scriptural teaching.
Lose the Taboo on Mental Health
Jared Cash
My name is Jared Cash. I am married to the love of my life, Jessica. I met Jessica the summer of 2012 and my life has never been the same. I knew right away that I wanted to marry her. I just had to do a little convincing for her to feel the same. But she finally warmed up to the idea and we got married in 2013. We have two beautiful girls, Juliette and Adeline. I feel called to speak on mental illness and to provide encouragement, insight, and hope. During my time of pastoring, I fully realized the importance of taking care of my mental health and saw how it affected so many others, as well. That is the journey I dive into in my podcast, “Lose the Taboo on Mental Health.” I would love for you to join me on the journey!
Exploring our Depths: a mental health resource guide
Our resource guide is specifically for those in the San Antonio, area. It is downloadable and free. To access, click "Media" at the top of the page. On the page, select "SAF Booklets."
Grace for the Children: Finding Hope in the Midst of Child and Adolescent Mental Illness
Matthew S. Stanford
The church's response to child and adolescent mental health disorders has too often been characterized by fear and misinformation rather than grace or wisdom. The result has been families that desperately need practical advice and pastoral care on these disorders, and on the thorny issues that often surround them. Psychologist Matthew Stanford has written Grace for the Children to educate Christians about a range of common child and adolescent mental health disorders, from both scientific and biblical perspectives.
Grace Alliance
Because mental health is the new normal… Christ-centered solutions to restore your mental health! An innovative experience integrating science and your faith in Christ to renew your mental and emotional health. The Grace Alliance is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that aims to cultivate healthy solutions for hearts and minds through simple, innovative biblical truths, scientific research, and practical tools. The Grace Alliance resources are designed to work within the spectrum of mental and emotional health needs. This includes both those with a mental health diagnosis and those without a diagnosis who are experiencing feelings of anxiety, depression, negative thoughts, overwhelming stressors and life challenges, and more. The curriculums are designed for the unique experience of both the individual experiencing mental health difficulties (adult or student-aged) and the spouse or family members supporting their loved one through a mental health difficulty.


All of these pods are available anywhere you catch your pods! For help, email us!
These include a variety of topics, including parenting, family, society & justice, and faith.
SAF.Church Pod
Tune into the SAF Pod anywhere you catch your pods! A new episode every week, with a different host, topic, and vibe. There is something for everyone!
The Bible in a Year with Fr. Mike Schmitz
In the Bible in a Year podcast, Fr. Mike Schimtz walks you through the entire Bible in 365 episodes, providing commentary reflection, and prayer along the way.
Smart Family Podcast
with Toni Nieuwhof and Dr. Rob Meeder. "We exist to offer you high quality, practical advice to help strengthen your marriage and boost your parenting to the next level. We'll help you understand the latest research. We'll bring you easy-to-digest conversations with experts on family life."
"The creators of BibleProject have in-depth conversations about the Bible and theology."
Your Move with Andy Stanley Podcast
"In this 30-minute message from Andy, you will discover how to make better decisions and live with fewer regrets.
The Carey Nieuwhof Leadership Podcast
"The Carey Nieuwhof Leadership Podcast is all about leadership, change, and personal growth."
Jesus Calling: Stories of Faith
"Listen to real-life stories of faith as told by those who have experienced the power of living in His presence."
The Dave Ramsey Show
Take control of your money once and for all. The Dave Ramsey Show offers up straight talk on life and money.
Parent Cue Live
Parent Cue Live is a weekly podcast featuring parenting experts designed to help you be the parent you want to be.
Pardon The Mess: Christian Parenting
Pardon the Mess offers real, raw, and honest conversations about parenting our kids with biblical truth in a fast-changing world. Our guests will encourage you, remind you of what matters to the Lord, and make you laugh thinking “ain’t that the truth.”This is where the description goes.
The Empowered Parent Podcast
The Empowered Parent Podcast with Kayla and Ryan North is a trust-based, trauma-informed, connected parenting resource. Hosted by Chris Turner.


If any of the apps are not available on your App Store, please contact us for an alternate recommendation. 
Our app!
This is SAF's App! Download "The Church App." Then connect to San Antonio First Church. Find message notes, event details, media, a digital Bible, and more!
Daily Bible Verses Quotes
Read a verse of the day, motivational and inspirational quotes, prayers, and devotionals each day. Offers a social media network, encouraging notifications, and faith application plans.
The Bible app by YouVersion. Follow along with hundreds of devotional and reading plans. Share progress with friends or mentors, share verse images to social media, and study various translations.
Blue Letter Bible
Digital Bible offers in-depth study with concordances, full Greek and Hebrew translations and references, integrated commentaries, over 30 language translations, auto-scroll, note-taking, and social media connection.
Daily Prayer, Meditative Prayers, and Bible Meditations help you develop a Christian mindfulness practice that helps you tackle all of life's challenges. Find a large catalog of topics and different daily plans for integrating mindful prayer on the daily.
Echo Prayer
Keep tracks of prayer topics and requests. Options for reminder notifications. Share requests with friends, engage the prayer timer, and directly notify people when you've prayed for them.