There are so many books out there to read; biographies and autobiographies, novels, educational, self-help, the list goes on. I have not always been a big reader but I am finding reading is a very healthy and helpful practice. The blessing of our digital age is that you can read an audio book by just listening to someone read the book to you.
One book I’d encourage you to pick up is the Bible. This is more than a book. It is God’s Word to his people. The Bible is living and active. I would suggest that you make it your practice to read something from the Bible each day. There are so many great reading plans out there that will help you develop this life-giving practice into your life. Maybe you want to read the New Testament through in a year. It’s not hard to figure out how much to read each day. Don’t make it a chore. But know that as you expose your soul and spirit to God’s Word, there is something very healthy going on, whether you feel anything or not.
Along with my Bible, I am reading a book right now called The Relentless Tenderness of Jesus by Brennan Manning. A friend loaned it to me, and Lissy, I will be returning it to you. One short section of the first chapter caught my spirit. As you read this, personalize these words.
“The love of God embodied in Jesus is radically different from our natural human way of loving. As a man, I am drawn to love appealing things and persons. I love the Jersey Shore and Clearwater Beach at sunset, Handel’s Messiah, hot fudge sundaes and my family. There is a common denominator or, better, a common dynamic in all of them. I am attracted by certain qualities that I find congenial. When I love as a man, I am drawn by the good perceived in the other. I love someone for what I find in him or her.
Now unlike ourselves, the Father of Jesus loves men and women, not for what He finds in them, but for what lies within Himself. It is not because men and women are good that He loves them, nor only good men and women that He loves. It is because He is so utterly good that He loves all persons, good and evil…He loves the loveless, the unloving, and the unlovable. He does not detect what is congenial, appealing, attractive, and respond to it with His favor. In fact, He does not respond at all. The Father of Jesus is a source. He acts; He does not react. He initiates love. He is love without motive.”
Hope those words encourage your heart.
I love you all,