Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Touched by Books

The meme showed up a couple of weeks ago... and finally got to me (thanks to a good friend from my English major "sic 'em, Bears!" days at Baylor U.) on Tuesday. The instructions were as follows:
List 10 books that have stayed with you. Try not to think too hard. They don't have to be "right" or "great works" they just have to have touched you in some way.

And so I did.

And now I'm sharing that list with you. (They are in no particular order - except the first one. Which is first.)

The Bible (especially Habakkuk & James) 
There’s no end to the publishing of books, and constant study wears you out so you’re no good for anything else. The last and final word is this: 
Fear God. 
Do what he tells you.   
Ecclesiastes 12:12-13, The Message
2. Soul Cravings - Erwin McManus
Bitterness is the enemy of love because it makes you unforgiving and unwilling to give love unconditionally. It is the enemy of hope because you keep living in the past and become incapable of seeing a better future. It is the enemy of faith because you stop trusting in anyone but yourself
3. Cadillac Desert - Marc Reisner
When archaeologists from some other planet sift through the bleached bones of our civilization, they may well conclude that our temples were dams. Imponderably massive, constructed with exquisite care, our dams will outlast anything else we have built... The permanence of our dams will merely impress the archaeologists; their numbers will leave them in awe. In this century, something like a quarter of a million have been built in the United States alone.
4. Astro City graphic novel series - Kurt Busiek
He was saving innocents and serving truth. And in the final judgement, what is more important? The burdens we bear -- or the way we bear them?
5. The Great Divorce - C.S. Lewis
There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, "Thy will be done," and those to whom God says, in the end, "Thy will be done." All that are in Hell, choose it. Without that self-choice there could be no Hell. No soul that seriously and constantly desires joy will ever miss it. Those who seek find. Those who knock it is opened.
6. Columbine - Dave Cullen 
My big surprise was that most of what we "know" about Columbine was wrong. It wasn't about the jocks, goths or the Trenchcoat Mafia. The killers didn't even see themselves as school shooters: their primary focus was the bombs.
7. Prince Ombra - Roderick MacLeish
It is said, and it is true, that just before we are born, a cavern angel puts his finger to our lips and says, “Hush, don’t tell what you know.” This is why we are born with a cleft on our upper lips and remembering nothing of where we came from.
8. The Twenty-One Balloons - William Pene du Bois ...
Half of this story is true and the other half might very well have happened.

9. The Once & Future King - T.H. White
It was well for him, with his chivalry and mysticism, to make the grand renunciation. But it takes two to make love, or to make a quarrel. She was not an insensate piece of property to be taken up or laid down at his convenience. You could not give up a human heart as you could give up drinking. The drink was yours, and you could give it up: but your lover's soul was not you own: it was not at your disposal; you had a duty towards it.”
10. Spirituality for the Rest of Us: A Down-to-Earth Guide to Knowing God - Larry Osborne  
God often liked to hang with and bless the very people I'd been told he'd want nothing to do with.

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