Since Matt believes I am a “professional reader” and he is in some ways right, I am going to exclude all the school stuff I have had to read and focus on just the stuff I read for enjoyment, which is not much especially considering that my James paper had a biblo with 28 items on it. Well here goes
1. Serve God and Save the Planet by Matt Sleeth. This book is fantastic. When I read McLaren’s Generous Orthodoxy a few years ago I loved his chapter on being “Green.” I considered it to be one of the strongest chapters of the book and loved his point of our relationship with the world around us, being related to our belief about the restoration of the Kingdom. His book is pretty easy reading, and in many ways him writing a bunch of short essays on a number of environmental topics. The writing is also surprisingly good. He takes on many of the sacred cows of the American lifestyle (stuff, TV, consumption, houses) and some other controversial topics (health care, population levels). He is a tad extreme for me, as I do not think I will ever think about hanging a clothes line in my living room to save my wife from using the dryer, but who knows.
2. Simply Christian by Tom/N.T. Wright: This book is also well written and enjoyable to read. I will just put my cards on the table here; Tom is a fantastic writer. I know I know one can easily mistake his congenial nature to be appeasing of liberal theology, but I do not think that should be all we focus on when we come to Tom’s writing. He really has so much to offer, and writes in quanties that would make him the Sam’s Club of Evangelical scholars. The book in has been compared to C.S. Lewis’ famous “Mere Christianity.” This alone was enough to intrigue me, as “Mere Christianity” is one of the most influential books that God brought before me. I read it twice within months of becoming a Christian and still find most of it to be the best combination of brilliance and simplicity I have ever read. Wright’s book is in that mold, but it is quite a bit more complex and I actually think it would not have been as helpful or compelling as a new Christians as “Mere Christianity” would be. His book is really good and give a great picture of the redemptive history that God is using to right many of the wrongs all can discern in our world.
I do not have a third book right now, as I am about half way through seven books so hopefully by next month I will have a bunch to write about.
1. Danielson: Okay this stuff is weird but I really like it, something childish and fun about it. When you listen you laugh, smirk and enjoy, kind of like being back in Jr. high. Just some fun music.
2. David Crowder: I know that most Christian music is quite iffy, but I enjoy Mr. Crowder. His last CD is one that I find myself coming back to over and over to when I need some good study music. If he would have left off the stupid phone interviews, one would be able to listen to the CD straight through. This guy has skill and is worth listening to. Do not let your prejudice against Christian music keep you from listen to such a good CD.
3. Jack Johnson: His song “Banana Pancakes” is a great song that I can listen to all the time. And both CD’s I have by him including his Curious George stuff I can listen to straight through. In case you have not noticed I really like albums I can listen to all the way through. I have come to appreciate artists who can organize their songs in a well fashioned model that lead you through the entire album. I think this has become a high value for me, because I do not want to be reading something and then be distracted by a crappy song, or something that just does not seem to fit. This is why Sufjan is usually is my go to guy when I need to get a lot of reading done.