Friday, February 15, 2013
Building People of Substance for Works of Power
Take time to read, Friend.
A few days ago I was reading an article about a fellow who spoke at the National Prayer Breakfast. He is a pediatric neurosurgeon considered to be at the top of his field. He is also an African-American who was raised in inner-city poverty by a single mother with a third grade education. She taught him some wonderful life lessons. He learned that he must work and depend on himself. She taught him not to make excuses, but to take responsibility. One particular story really struck a chord in me. In her work as household help in well-to-do homes, she noticed something: the people who lived in those big houses rarely spent the evening watching TV. They conversed, they worked, and most importantly, they read. She came home and informed her two sons that TV was now officially limited. They would learn to read. What a treasure to give someone, a love of reading.
Our popular culture is too loud, too base, and too superficial to provide us with anything valuable. The so-called journalistic media has deteriorated to doing little more than pimping for their favorite political party. Most folks are simply deluged with meaningless electronic drivel. It is mind-numbing. I guess the message is this: force yourself to read. Read things that challenge you. Read things that make you think. Read things for which you need to keep a dictionary nearby. If you read things that make you mad, ask yourself why you are so defensive. Is it that you cannot adequately defend your own beliefs? If so, read until you can. The same technology that allows infinite nonsense into your home and office can also provide massive amounts of reading material at the click of a mouse. You can read on your phone, your tablet, or your computer. You can do it on the bus, in the bed, or on the treadmill. Don’t know what to read? Ask three people you admire for their favorite books and their favorite periodical. Then read the list. By the time you are done you will have a new list of your own.
Somebody Said: Never be entirely idle; but either be reading, or writing, or praying or meditating or endeavoring something for the public good. Thomas a Kempis
Scripture Reading He composed some 3,000 proverbs and wrote 1,005 songs. He could speak with authority about all kinds of plants, from the great cedar of Lebanon to the tiny hyssop that grows from cracks in a wall. He could also speak about animals, birds, small creatures, and fish. And kings from every nation sent their ambassadors to listen to the wisdom of Solomon. (1 Kings 4:32-34 NLT)
I thank God for parents who gave me the precious gift of reading, first to me, then with me.. The human mind and heart work very much on the same principle as the computer: garbage in, garbage out. This week, for just one hour a day, turn off the TV and read. You will be better for it, and others may begin to listen when you speak!