September 19, 2017 Bookshelf: What I’m Reading and Listening to at the Moment

The late Dr. Seuss once said: “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” Like the legendary author of such iconic children’s classics as The Cat in The Hat and Green Eggs and Ham, I love to read. Of course, I’ve moved on from Hop on Pop. Sadly, I’ve met many who haven’t advanced that much further. Many Americans haven’t read a book cover-to-cover since their school days. It’s sad, and it explains a lot of the problems we’re facing in our society today.

Unlike some book aficionados, I don’t insist – with my nose in the air – that you read only the most sophisticated literature. If you’re not into highbrow literature, that’s okay. Start somewhere. Experiment. Read widely. In time, you’ll discover your tastes and preferences. But, whatever you do, read.

Don’t have time? Nonsense. I will hold up my busy schedule against just about anyone else. My work week can, at times, be extremely demanding. But you’d be amazed at how much progress you can make in your reading by just investing 30-60 minutes each day, with maybe a little bit more on the weekend (unless you’re like me, and your busiest work days are on the weekend).

Personally, I will actively read or listen to several books at a time. I can read whichever one I’m in the mood for. And when I get bored with one, I can switch to another. Unfortunately, over the years, I developed a habit of not finishing books. I’m now forcing myself to finish what I start — unless the book is terrible. So, while I’m reading and listening to several books at the same time, I will finish all of them. Thus far, I’ve completed 49 full-length books this year. You can track my progress on Goodreads. But, in saying that, I’m nowhere near the impressive totals of some of my friends and colleagues – many of whom read hundreds of books each year.

Here are the books I’m actively reading or listening to — the books currently on my “bookshelf”:

BOOKS TO WHICH I’M LISTENING

  • Church History in Plain Language (4th ed) by Bruce L. Shelley
  • Killing England: The Brutal Struggle for American Independence by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard

BOOKS I’M READING

  • The Art of War by Sun Tzu
  • The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles by Steven Pressfield
  • The End Times in Chronological Order: A Complete Overview to Understanding Bible Prophecy by Ron Rhodes
  • Heaven by Randy Alcorn
  • Atheism: The Case Against God by George H. Smith  (**yes, I read widely**)
  • America: Imagine a World Without Her by Dinesh D’Souza
  • Hangman’s Curse: Veritas Project by Frank Peretti
  • Noah Primeval by Brian Godawa
  • Writing Vivid Settings: Professional Techniques For Fiction Authors by Rayne Hall

If you look at my Goodreads profile, you may see additional books. That can sometimes be misleading, because it will sometimes register that I’m reading a book even if I only open it to look up a fact or two – or to check whether it’s worth my time to read.

There are also several reference books that are always on my shelf, though I have no plans to read them cover-to-cover (at least not anytime soon) given their length. But I have read significant chunks of them already. These include (but are not limited to):

  • Systematic Theology by Wayne Grudem
  • Theology for Today by Elmer Towns
  • Bible Answers For Almost All Your Questions by Elmer Towns
  • KJV Bible Commentary by Dr. Ed Hindson
  • The Big Book of Bible Difficulties by Norman L. Geisler and Thomas Howe
  • Hard Sayings of The Bible by Walter C. Kaiser, Jr.; Peter H. Davids; F.F. Bruce; and Manfred Brauch
  • Roget’s Thesaurus of Words For Writers by David Olsen, Michelle Bevilacqua, Justin Cord Hayes, and Robert Bly
  • and more

And, of course, the above reading does not include my regular Bible reading. Let me be the first to say that the Bible is the most important book anyone should read – at least in my judgment. It’s certainly the most important book on my shelf.

I hope this has been an encouragement to you to focus more on your reading habits. Keep reading. Even if you only manage a page or two per day, you’re making progress. Before you know it, you’ll be a reading machine!

God bless you.