25 Books Every Christian Should Read
As a person thinks...so he (or she) is... Proverbs 23:7
The ancient writer of Proverbs hit the mark when he wrote these words. Another important fact to consider when thinking about why we think the way we do and the impact that our thinking has on who we become as individuals is to consider this: we are also what we read.
Words have power. Written or spoken. Words influence our thinking and ultimately play an integral role in shaping who we become in life. Our minds are like a super computer and then some, a 'translator' of every idea, 'mot', and experience we have ever encountered.
Every single one of life's sights, sounds, and experiences is recorded in our minds. I have met people whose minds were broken by devastating and unfortunate life experiences. I have also met people whose minds were profoundly intelligent, yet they lacked inner peace and depth of spirit. And I have met broken people who were transformed by the power of God's Word and love. Intellect is a gift but it is what we do with knowledge that truly shapes who we become.
An example of a 'great mind' in human history is recorded in the Book of Daniel, where the life of King Nebuchadnezzar II , a colossal and some might say, 'ego-tripping' ruler of ancient Babylon is detailed. Neb II was renowned for his intellect and creative vision for empire building. One of his achievements became one of the seven wonders of the ancient world, the famous hanging gardens of Babylon. Neb II's story is a 'must read'...After denying God's existence, Neb II 'snapped' and ended up living like a wild animal...until he returned to acknowledge God as the author and all-powerful One and Giver of life.
Neb II is a great example as well that our minds are not invincible. Our minds are actually vulnerable. The human mind is a phenomenal harbour of our souls, the seat of our emotions and free will, the epicentre and spirit of who we are and who we become. No one can tap its depths. But if God says He is 'Spirit' and that His Word is also spirit...just think for a moment what that might mean...in your life. If we are all spiritual beings, whether we realize it or not, each one of us has the capacity to be transformed spiritually. God's Word speaks of His Word having the power to transform the human mind from darkness to light. Incredible. I encourage you to read God's Word - cover to cover...and find out for yourself.
I would also very much like to recommend a 'fill up' from the following outstanding list of classic writings on Christian faith and thought, posted at Renovaré, under the title: "25 Books Every Christian Should Read"(and which I believe every person should read), edited by Julia L. Roller.
"In 25 Books Every Christian Should Read, Richard Foster, Dallas Willard, Phyllis Tickle, Chris Webb, and a diverse editorial board of leaders have identified the most helpful and historic books for Christian discipleship. The book provides a reader’s guide for the devotional history of the Church...to "lead you on a journey of discipleship that few in the history of the Church have experienced and help you become like Jesus." (HarperOne, softcover, 416 pages.)
25 Books includes in each chapter: a thorough overview of the book; insight into why it is an essential classic; guidance for your reading; an extended excerpt, and a Study Guide for each book. 25 Books also includes a list and annotated bibliography of vital contemporary authors.
Please visit the Renovaré web site for detailed information at: www.renovare.us/25books
Renovaré is a latin word meaning, "...to make new spiritually..."
Copyright 2011 S. Michaels
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