Reading for spiritual growth.

One of the reasons I want to write books is because God has used books so much in my own life and growth. I remember when a friend of mine recommended I read Knowing God by J. I. Packer.
I tore through that book and its words tore through my soul. I was never the same. I knew God was big, but that book helped me see Him in a much deeper way.
I know some of us don’t like to read, but it’s a habit worth cultivating. It can save your life. I’ve had difficult questions that I’ve found the answers to in good books.
I’ve gone through dry seasons in my spiritual life, where I felt like I was slipping away, but God used books to pull me back in. Sometimes I don’t even know what I need, but God speaks to me through a great Christian book.
I understand reading books is much different from reading the Bible. Reading the Bible is hearing from God. Reading books is more like talking to friends about what God said.
Obviously hearing directly from God is more important, but that doesn’t mean hearing from others is worthless. I don’t know a lot of the guys who wrote my favorite books, but I still consider them “friends.”
I have “friends” who are pastors, scholars, and entrepreneurs. There are some I agree with a lot, and other friends I disagree with on some points but can still benefit from. Just like my regular friends, I’ll take counsel when it’s wise and biblical, and I’ll go in another direction otherwise.
Reading has been a huge part of my process of going deeper in God’s truth. If you don’t know where to start, ask someone you trust to point you in the right direction.

Excerpt taken from RISE by TRIP LEE (@TripLee). Used with permission from Thomas Nelson, 2015. For more information, visit RISEbook.tv.

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