Since I plan, for the duration of this blog, to recommend quite a few books that have impacted my life greatly, I thought I’d begin by writing an overall explanation of my purpose for them before talking about any specific books.
I am quite a reader, but over the last several years, the Lord has taken me back repeatedly to some of the books that have propelled me forward in some way. It’s been really good for me because, no matter how good a book is, and no matter how much insight I gain from it, I forget a lot of it as time passes. Sometimes I might just go back and re-read the things I underlined, but most of the time, I read the whole book again – gaining even greater insight than before.
This brings up a true confession – I am a messy reader. I mark up my books with underlines and turned down pages, and I bend back the spines on paperbacks so that they open out better. You probably don’t want to borrow one of my books unless you can overlook how I personalized it. I don’t, however, apologize for this character trait.
There are a couple of other reading habits for which I make no apology, without casting aspersions on you, if you differ. I almost never read anything that isn’t Christian. Even in that category, I’m pretty particular about what I read. You see, I have more than enough opportunities day in and day out to be exposed to the things of the world that would have me conform to its ways. When I have the opportunity to choose what I put in my mind, it’s really important that I put in more of the Word – in many forms – so that I can be transformed by the renewing of my mind. (Romans 12:2) It’s really that simple.
I also make no apology for reading fiction. More often than not, I read more of the teaching genre of books, but sometimes I really need a release from the heaviness that I find in my life. If I get a good Christian fiction book, I find that I can lose myself in the well-written story and in the characters, and get to know the Lord more in the process. Most times, even in the midst of the story, I am challenged to come up higher in my own walk with Him. Some of the fiction I will recommend to you also challenges my limited understanding concerning the times in which we live, with Scriptures to study for further insight.
There are programs in cyber-world where I could get some sort of remuneration for recommending books on my blog. I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with this, but letting you know that I don’t really understand how it works, so it’s not why I tell you about certain books and not about others. The whole purpose of this blog, as is our purpose as Christians, is that we may know Christ (Philippians 3:10), and then that we make Him known to others. Many skilled writers out there have written books that help fulfill this vision, and I want to let you know about them. That’s why I add this category. I hope you enjoy it.