Wednesday, September 17, 2008


I enjoy reading. I also really don't like reading. Here's why.

I think I tend to read from a pretty good book list. I've got people in my life who have read LOTS and they generally know what to recommend - really good stuff. I've read some books with some GREAT content, stuff that really is life-changing. The problem? Generally, it's the authors.

For the most part, the people who write books are the ones who have mastered a certain skill, discipline, or art. Often it was a long learning process for them, but noneless - they mastered whatever it is they're writing about. I'll cite Donald Miller as an exception, and move on.

Beth Moore has done great things for women all over the globe. I've yet to meet someone who DOESN'T like her material, man and woman alike. She writes "Get Out of That Pit!" and women everywhere are inspired. Unfortunately, however, few women are as spunky and assertive as Beth is. The "just do it" mentality really only works in advertising.

John Maxwell has done some great things for leadership. He's considered an exemplary leader and has shared everything he knows through numerous books. But John Maxwell has filed away thoughts on leadership EVERY DAY since he was 17 year old (he's now 60). Also, John Maxwell enjoys getting up at 5 or 6 in the morning to read, write, and reflect. When I was 17, I rolled out of bed 5 minutes before my last possible chance to leave for school (I haven't changed much yet!) and finished my homework as fast as possible so I could play basketball with friends or surf the web (remember Napster? iTunes now has me honest).

John Eldredge has done great things for Christians' souls. He has brought many a man and woman to life with his books Wild At Heart and Captivating. But when he gets into The Journey Of Desire or The Sacred Romance, we learn just how disciplined he is, how consistently he works out, how much time he actually spends sitting pondering life, and how nutritious his diet is. He of course suggests that we all aspire to most of these traits, and he may be right in saying so. But how many of us really achieve consistent patterns of discipline and feel alive?

I'm not offering any solutions to any problems here. I'm really not even complaining. I just find myself often wondering: It seems like all of the books I read portray such a 'perfect,' structured, disciplined life. It works great for all of them. But it's nothing like me. And God is way too creative for me to believe that the same formula works for everybody.

I would say that someone like me should write a book, but it would take way too much time sitting in one place for that to ever happen. Maybe someone like me who has conquered the challenges I face should pick a spot at a coffee shop somewhere where he can show up at some point in the later hours of most Wednesdays when he thinks of it, and other people like me can go chat with him and pick his brain.

Sorry so long. Any thoughts? Anyone else have similar feelings?

-Mark- +

1 comment:

Eri said...

You're right, God is too creative to have the same formula work for everyone. I think those authors, that's what works for you have to find what works for you. Like your new blog look.

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