Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Reading...

There is ulimited amounts of knowledge out there that is available to anyone who has the patience and time to read. I've recently begun to read again... seriously, just in the past few days... and it is amazing to me how much inofrmation is just waiting for my eyes to pass over it, putting words together to make coherent thoughts that will increase the quality of my life.

For so long I have not picked up another book with the feeling of guilt that grips me and says, "If you aren't reading even the Bible then how do you have time to read this?" And so I haven't read. In addition to that, I have to be so centrally focused on what I am reading that I can't even let the boys play while I read... My fear has been that they would be able to paint their room with pudding before I would even notice that the fridge is oozing purple goo and the bathtub is over flowing with bubbles. But they have recently proven to me that they can at least play for about 10-15 minutes before I have to intervene. (Not bad for an almost 3 and 5 year old.)

Another realization came to me today and is the point of this post. Like I said before I've had this thought that if I'm not taking the time to read the Bible then I don't have time to read for recreational purposes. But just like everything else in my life right now, I questioned that. Why? Why wouldn't I be able to read what I want? So I have this book that is not exquisite or mind bending or romantic in any way. It's about how to get started in Home Schooling... a book that I thought would be helpful and has proven several times over to be just that. But I'll tell ya, it has been a significant wake up call to me... not so much the content of the book but the fact that I really don't read all that well. The point: the thought that I've been having is that if I can learn to read better and read books that I enjoy then my dedication to reading and studying the Bible just might follow suit. The thing that I need to have when I'm reading my Bible is a thought to focus my mind on that applies the scripture that I'm reading to my life. Otherwise it seems to me like I'm reading the same scripture I was reading when I was 8 only now I'm reading it for the 111th time. A Bible that is good for that, I've discovered, is the Time With God Bible. Logan has one that I think I might steal to be able to get into the word daily. I don't think he'll mind.

I'm not a particularly quick reader. It takes me about a minute and a half to read the text on a full 8.5x11 piece of paper. But this new world throws into sharp awareness for me all of the things I have been missing and so I am drawn to it. The trouble I'm having now is paying attention to the things that I have to get done: lesson plans for the boys, actually doing the lessons with the boys, work duties, house work, etc.

Next on my list: Bringing Up Boys by James Dobson - Recommended by Logan

Do you have any recommendations?

4 comments:

kristi w said...

I totally resonate with your reading guilt! I have the same internal battle - each night when I choose which bedside book to pick up, my Bible or my current other read. I started making it a "policy" that I read my other one during the day and my Bible before bed. Sometimes my other books would give me weird dreams, so I figure Scripture is a better thing to have swirling in my brain at night anyway!

I also agree that picking up a different Bible than the one you've always used can help. I have been reading the Century Version (Max Lucado's study bible). I recently got stuck in one chapter, reading it over and over, trying to discern it's message. When I explained what I thought it was saying to Allan, he replied, "Isn't that the [such-n-such] chapter?" Lightbulb moment. One of those regular old passages looked totally different to me in a new version. It's helped me read through the Bible like it's the first time.

Recommendations: I just finished Tony Dungy's new book - very inspirational (but it helps if you like sports). I've liked all of the Donald Miller books I've read (which isn't all of them). Foster's Celebration of Discipline has changed our lives more than any other. The Red Tent by Anita Diamant is one of my all-time favorite fiction books. I have other light non-fictions I'd be happy to share with you, too.

*whew* - sorry for the long reply!!

Kathy said...

Ditto on Foster's book and "The Red Tent" in addition to the ones I e-mailed you about.

Happy Reading!!

Big Mike Lewis said...

The Great Omission by Dallas Willard is kicking my butt.

Velvet Elvis by Rob Bell is supposed to be really good. It's next on my list to read.

Rebecca said...

I could go on and on!!!! I do find that once I really start reading I don't want to do anything else (i.e. work). If I could just sit on my butt for a few hours everyday and tear through books I would be a happy camper. Alas, I have not found a way to pay the bills by reading.

One book that I have read that has had a huge impact on me is: Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers. She has retold the story of Hosea. One of the most beautiful stories ever told!

The book we bought you for work is also an interesting read and I think would keep your interest because you'll think of students who live with you! :)

On my Facebook account, I keep a reading list and I am also working on getting one up on my blogsite - with recommendations and just books in my library.