• My Love Affair with Books

Posted by: kidhelper on Friday, May 13th, 2011

My Love Affair With Books

The warm embrace of a really good book is what I long for now—a kind of closeness that envelops you. Granted, not all books treat you with this kind of intimacy, but you know it when it does.

For me, books did not hold this esteemed place in my childhood and youth. I had few books growing up. By third grade, I had lived in five states and the island of Guam. I struggled with reading—being timid about reading aloud in a reading group or in front of the class. I was slow, with an awkward rhythmic, but halting manner, as I phonically tried to sound out the words. I was way too self-conscious and often embarrassed. It was not my favorite thing to do.

I seemed to do OK in school, but my late start with reading changed in my senior year of High School, when God began dealing with me about the ministry. Somehow, I reasoned that study and reading would be part of the plan. At Moody Bible Institute I became a reader and started collecting books for my “would-be” minister’s library, not knowing where I would end up. Only “required” reading was included in the next eleven years and five schools. I accumulated a fairly representative clergy library, old and new, academic and reference works, biographies, commentaries, and language study helps, many of which, I had never even read. My passion was to collect good books and fill my shelves.

However, my “love affair” with books has been more recent, just the last few years, when…

I decided I was just going to be a reading leader. It was simple really, read a book a month—that was it.

Now I am in my 50th year of ministry and I have begun downsizing my collection. Some 60% of my library is packed for India, a place where Christian books are rare and needed by the leaders. Some were abandoned as an easy decision, like an old tie, no longer useful to me. However, Some were hard to part with, a bit painful, like getting rid of an old friend. All this transition with books is happening while my reading was becoming more personal.

I am still buying books and reading them. Some are speaking in my ear and holding my full attention. Here are a few titles that I am reading or plan to read this year.

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