A friend suggest I read a book by a certain author new to me. I usually look forward to these things, but even after reserving it from the library and bringing it home I hesitated to get started. I figured, "It's just because I have so many other things I want to read." Finally I finished the one I had been working on, and sat down to give this new one a go. Interesting...good style...different...oooh...WHOA...too different! I paused. Was I being too critical? I was reading about war and imprisonment, and, though these things happen, did I really want to read this? I've read Foxes' Book of Martyrs and other martyr stories, but this just didn't seem the same. There was no Christian message, and I'm sure that gave the story a hopeless quality.
What was the problem? Maybe I felt like I was disappointing a friend. She isn't a close friend and will probably never ask me if I read the book. So I closed it, and thought I don't need to read this. It's not that I don't want to read something weighty. I just finished Like Always by Robert Elmer about a woman dying of Leukemia. That other book just wasn't for me. It didn't seem good for me.
Of course, I had to do some other reading after that. Can't end the evening that way! So I retrieved my devotional book, and the Lord renewed my spirit as I read the uplifting and challenging words of a young believer who writes in simple everyday language with a heart for God. What a difference! Thank you, my young friend.
Did you ever pick up a book that just weighs your spirit down? I don't mean one that challenges your spirit to greater heights. I mean one that gives you a sinking feeling, and the Holy Ghost is saying, "Why are you reading this?". Put it down! Get rid of it! Reach for something better. There is so much good literature out there. Pick up a tried and true classic or a new book that inspires. Or better yet. Pick up the Good Book!