Why You Should Read
I’ve been reading books since I was a boy. My Grandma (nanny) worked at our local public library, so I had endless access to books on dinosaurs, tornadoes, animals, and cars. I’m still so grateful to her for encouraging me to love books. My mother, recognizing my love of books, got me in to a disney book club where I received a great little book once a month by mail. It was great. At 9 years old I was given a kids picture bible that I literally wore out reading from cover to cover over and over. It was when I began to love the Story of God. My next big jump into reader land was at 13 when my church hired the youth pastor who would be my first ministry mentor and also teach me to love the Bible and great Christian authors. He was a huge Max Lucado fan, and since I wanted to be like Bro. Craig, I became a Max Lucado reading machine during my teens.
During college and seminary, my reading both required and voluntarily only increased. Over the years I have developed different means of retaining the many nuggets of gold I find in different books I read. My wife bought me a set of the great Charles Spurgeon’s sermons for our first Christmas. They’ve been priceless. The wonderful systematic theologies that sit on my shelves are so beautiful and rich. Books like Rick Warren’s “Purpose Driven Life” and John Eldredge’s “Wild at Heart” were game changers in my life. My reading of a trilogy of biographies on the life of Theodore Roosevelt have inspired me in ways I could write 20 blog posts to explain. Reading has enriched me, trained me, and helped me along my path…..and it will you too, if you will read!!
I want to encourage you to become a reader. Just try it for a while and I really think you will be hooked. Sadly, many people haven’t read a book since they left high school or college. Turn the tv off and get a book!! Read on topics that apply to your life and your life stage. Read biographies on people that will inspire you. Read on marriage and parenting. More than anything, read God’s Word!! Then, read books to help you understand His Word. This will deepen your life in ways I can’t describe.
I’ve been personally poured into and mentored by people like Rick Warren, Andy Stanley, John Maxwell, and Mark Driscoll. I’ve had conversations with Lincoln, Roosevelt, and Spurgeon. How you may ask? No, I’m not friends with these folks (some are dead!). It’s because I’ve read their books. When you read, it’s like sitting down with an author for a while. It is having someone often far smarter and more experienced that you pour into your life. So, read my friends. You won’t regret it.
3 suggestions for reading:
1) Take it slow at first. Reading a chapter a day will get you through a couple books a month. So you could potentially read 24 books this year!!
2) Read with friends. Get a few friends and read a book together. Discuss the chapters and insights. You build community and friendships.
3) Take notes. Find a way to capture the applications and highlights from your reading.