Anyone who knows us knows that we are a family of readers. I’m probably the least well-read member of my family, partially because of other obligations, but also because I often just don’t take the time to read. But, I do have a huge stack of books I really want to conquer.
Last year, I decided to become more aggressive about conquering that stack, determining to always have two books going. The first would be something fiction, primarily because that is my number one way to relax. For years, I limited my fiction reading to slow times. But, I’m learning that rest does not come by waiting until after everything is done or life is slow. (When does that really happen, anyway?) It comes by trusting God to take care of the needs while I obey and take moments or days of rest. One of my active steps toward rest has been to intentionally keep a novel going. It might be just a chapter at night before I go to bed two or three nights a week, followed by a little more reading time on Fridays. But, it’s always progress.
The second book would always be a nonfiction title. I’m not a strong nonfiction reader, and it is very easy to not ever get around to that stack. But, the more I read nonfiction, the easier it becomes. So, while intentionally reading fiction was about rest, being intentional about nonfiction was an effort to stretch myself and grow. Last year, I chose titles I could read in short bursts during my morning Bible and prayer time. Again, it wasn’t much each day – typically only a section from a chapter, rather than even an entire chapter. But, I saw more progress through nonfiction than I have seen in a long time! Through the course of the year, I read several great books that way, including Aimee Byrd’s Housewife Theologian, Ken Shigematsu’s God in My Everything, and The Rest of God by Mark Buchanan.
This year, I’m continuing the trend, but I’m adding a third reading slot to the schedule. I have a list of “want to read” titles that don’t really fit in my morning Bible reading and devotional time. These titles are aimed to help me with my writing goals, show me a little bit of what it means to adopt a child, or strengthen my ability to teach. So, on “normal” days, one work break will be a fifteen minute time slot set aside for reading one of those books.
Right now, I actually have six books going, which is incredibly odd for a gal who is typically a “one book at a time” kind of reader. But, that’s temporary. I just had some time-sensitive reads that needed to be tackled – including some school titles that I need to read alongside my high schooler. I’ve got a good rotation schedule going, and I’m enjoying every single book!
Here are the titles I’m currently enjoying:
- Catalyst – a Star Wars novel, prequel to Rogue One. The rest of the family has already read it, and considered it a fast read (a few hours). That means I’ll hopefully have it done in about a week!
- The Heart of Revelation by J. Scott Duvall
- Words That Change Everything by Karen Jordan
- Passion and Purity by Elisabeth Elliot
- Can You Drink This Cup? by Henri Nouwen
- Self-Promotion for Introverts by Nancy Ancowitz
Meanwhile, I am finally making use of the Goodreads account I’ve had for a while, entering upcoming titles so I’ll be able to just glance at my list to pick my next read.
What about you?
Are you a reader? Do you make time to read, or do you just read when you can? What are some of your favorite – or current – reads?
2 thoughts on “Reading”
I love to read, but as a busy, wife and homeschool mom, I’ve found it difficult to read for pleasure. I could justify reading non-fiction to help me grow spiritually and as a wife, mom, and teacher, and also felt it important to read with my children. But to read just because I wanted to read? It simply didn’t happen. Until recently. I’ve made it a point to also keep a little fiction going, and I’m enjoying it! I recently completed Connilyn Cossette’s Out of Egypt series– it was great!
Sheila, that’s how I’ve been for years. But I’m learning it’s part of my rest, and rest is an obedience issue, not a selfishness issue. I’ve really had to work to change that mentality!!
I’m going to put that series on my list. 🙂
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