Monday, March 23, 2009
Getting Degrees Does Not Include Reading Books
Three historical realities for me.
I know this may come as a shock to many, but obtaining formal degrees did not create a list of finished books for me, but a pile of class sylabuses that told me what I could and should read on the subject someday. Four years in a Presbyterian College earning a Bible/English major, while working on the work crew 20 hrs a week and pursuing attractive Christian women as a steady pastime did not allow me to read complete books.
Three years in Seminary allowed me to go into great debt purchasing Scholarly books and reference books, but did not allow me time, with 20 hrs a week on the work crew and two years of pursuing attractive Christian women, and one year of enjoying my attractive Christian wife to actually read books.
The early years in ministry brought the acquistion of partial libraries from retiring pastors, and those old books became friends as I search for ideas, illustrations, and content. My motto for a one salary family with little kids was, never buy a book you will only read once. In those early years I loved John Stott, Francis Shaeffer, everything C.S. Lewis ever wrote. My early commentataries were The Tyndale set, Hendrickson, and the Calvin lectures, and an almost complete set of biblical commentaries that was the hottest thing going in the 70s and 80s with authors like Leon Morris, but the name of which now escapes me. I only stare at them every day for 30 years, duh!
More tomorrow, a slow and unimpressive start for sure.