I've noticed several bloggers I read have posted some of the books they are reading right now. I've also seen it in a couple of the email newsletters I get from people. One had a quote I thought worth sharing.
It was in Chuck Baldwin's email (yes, the Chuck Baldwin that ran for President on the Constitution Party ticket in 2008) newsletter that I saw this quote: "A man is the sum of the people he associates with and the books he reads. Choose both wisely." I deleted the email, so I can't source back farther than Dr. Baldwin quoting it.
Given that, I thought I'd share a few of the books I'm reading right now:
1. The Holy Bible. If you've read the "About me" or "Profile" section, you know I'm a Christian Pastor. If you are a Christian and your pastor doesn't read the Bible, get a new pastor. Either change churches or get your church to change pastors. I, personally, prefer the New American Standard Bible. Second favorite would be the New Living Translation, which is a superb improvement on the original Living Bible. (Well, they had two different philosophies of translation, of which I prefer the NLT over the LB). I'm also a fan of the English Standard Version (ESV) and the Hard Core Southern Baptist, I mean Holman Christian Standard Bible.
2. I picked up a book entitled Water of the Word from Amazon.com. It's a book of prayers for one's wife. So far, I'm liking it. It's helping me to organize my thoughts about specific ways to pray for Ann. Which is hard, because I struggle with thinking prayer is about either asking for stuff or asking God to fix problems, and I have a hard time seeing anything in her that needs fixed.
3. I'm reading A Praying Life by Paul Miller, because it was one of the recommended books by Leadership Journal for "the leader's inner life." Noticing a theme here? One area that I struggle with is having an organized prayer life. I understand to pray without ceasing, but I'm trying to improve the quality of that praying. Not because God hears better, but because I need to hear better.
4. I'm reading 2 books for book reviews, one for Booksneeze and one for Waterbrook/Multnomah. (See Disclosures!) For Booksneeze, I've got The Voice New Testament and for WaterBrook/Multnomah, I've got Love and War which is about marriage. Look for both reviews soon.
5. For sermon research, I'm using the NICNT Series on Matthew which is good, as well as the Expositor's Bible Commentary volume on Matthew, which also has Mark and Luke, the other synoptic Gospels in it. Philippians is my evening series, and I'm using the Ancient Christian Commentary Series for it.
6. I'm trying to actually code a website, so I have two separate HTML, XHTML, and CSS for Dummies books. How dummy am I on this? They have the same title. They are different books. I don't understand either one of them.
7. For fun, I'm reading a book about evidence of pre-Colombian, and much older, human civilization in the Americas. We're talking trade between sub-Saharan Africa and South America, Ancient Egyptians, and more. Seems impossible to believe, and the evidence is thin, but not much thinner than some of the evidence mainstream science uses dogmatically to insist on current evolutionary theory. Just how do they explain that hammer in the 70 million year old rock? Anyway, Discovering the Mysteries of Ancient America is the book. Not for people who are easily swayed into conspiracy theory.
8. When I planned this post, I was reading Pilgrim's Progress, the newly edited edition released by Crossway Books. Then I had a doctor's appointment and had plenty of wait time. So I finished it.
9. I also routinely read Leadership Journal and Lifeway's Biblical Illustrator in the printed magazine department. I'm a frequent reader of several blogs. I read my wife's blog, Emil Turner's blog, Michael Hyatt's blog, and then others as I have time.
10. What am I looking forward to reading? Eric Metaxas has a biography on Dietrich Bonheoffer coming out soon, Robert Morgan has a book on 100 Bible Verses every Christian should memorize, and one of the co-authors of Secrets of Ancient America has a book on Lost Cities of North America. Might reread Lord of the Rings, might not, and will probably tackle a few other novels I've heard are coming out, but I don't know when.
How long will all of this take? A while, probably. I've got language learning to do for Polish, Koine Greek, and Biblical Hebrew. I've sent in my application to go back to seminary, which I'll be doing by distance, which means a lot more reading.
Why? Because I'm not satisfied with myself. I need to learn and grow more, and I want to set that example for both my family and my church. If we are the sum of who we know and what we read, then the people that know me also benefit from what I read, and I want to be a valuable person in their lives.
Oh yeah….below are Amazon.com links to most of the aforementioned literary masterpieces, as well as the wacky stuff. You sort out which!:
|Thinline Bible-NASB [B-NS-ZON BLK RL -OS]|
|Water Of The Word: Intercession For Her|
|A Praying Life: Connecting with God in a Distracting World|
|The Voice New Testament|
|Love and War: Finding the Marriage You've Dreamed Of|
|Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians (Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture)|
|The Gospel of Matthew (New International Commentary on the New Testament)|
|HTML, XHTML & CSS for Dummies [HTML XHTML & CSS FOR DUMMIE-6E]|
|HTML, XHTML and CSS All-In-One For Dummies|
|Discovering the Mysteries of Ancient America: Lost History And Legends, Unearthed And Explored|
|The Pilgrim's Progress: From This World to That Which Is to Come|