Reading

Who else has wanted to have the book of Romans as a LETTER? Why Bible Typography Matters

Or 1/2 Chronicles, or Daniel, as a book?

I know we can fairly easily get ahold of booklet editions of the Gospel of John by itself, and Mark, but I’ve always wanted this for other books and letters. Without all the verse and chapter numbers and notes everywhere. I sometimes very much desire to read passages/books as they would have been read by, if not by those who originally read them (scrolls being rather awkward?) then in a similar literary format. The Exodus as more of a novel, or the Pentateuch even, as a single novel. Maybe it would have chapters, although I would place them differently to how we generally have them in our Bibles. At least, not in the middle of paragraphs?!?

I’d love, and will get around to preparing one day, to have Romans as a letter, take it on the bus, or wherever, with me, and read it, as a letter. Right?

Why Bible Typography Matters

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Why does Jefferson Bethke Hate Religion, But Love Jesus?

This week has been a kind of a semi-forced week off from writing for me. Fatigue and other things taking priority over reading and writing. Such as devotional time, sleep, and the discovery of the My OldBoy emulator for my tablet, and rediscovering the Pokemon franchise. Sometime much easier to sit in darkness and play such a game than get up and read or write, especially from bed or sitting in bed with little one sleeping on lap. It doesn’t require much in the way of sustained focus either, which is a plus. If I could switch on and off ‘writing mode’ or read and write effectively while being constantly interrupted, I would write much more and finish many move books. Not that I’m not forcing myself to curtail that gaming somewhat…it’s a bit addictive.

On the subject of reading books, however, I’m apologising for any disappointed expectations in terms of regular book reviews, including my own hopes. I’m actually near or near-ish to the end of several books, so hopefully in the next month or so I’ll be writing about a few books 🙂 These include: Fight: A Christian Case for Non-Violence by Preston Sprinkle; A Genius for Deception: How Cunning Helped the British Win Two World Wars by Nicholas Rankin; The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical by Shane Claiborne; Raising Steam by Terry Pratchett; and maybe a couple of others that I’ve not actually dipped into recently.

 

Adding to the list, and my intention is to make it near the top is Jesus > Religion: Why He Is So Much Better Than Trying Harder, Doing More, and Being Good Enough by Jefferson Bethke. This comes near the top because it was a gift from fellow blogger Skully Speaks (whom you should definitely check out), which I actually received in the mail Tuesday night, but haven’t gotten around to posting about until now. I’ve loved Bethke’s spoken word videos (see below), and was interested in his book, but unable to justify the expense (particularly given my pile of books waiting to be read that I semi-obviously have justified the expense for), and she offered to send me a copy. Big giant THANKYOU! 🙂

I would love to say that I’ll have this read in a week, or even two, but I can’t promise that at all. Same as I’ve currently got a bit of peace and quiet alone to write, but I don’t think I’m going to manage to write all of the half dozen posts I’ve got on the burner at the back of my mind. I am hoping to do one or two in addiction to this one, and rough out or note a few more, but we’ll see how I do. No links of the week this week either, for similar reasons to my recent lack of writing – I haven’t collated (m)any interesting links either, and I’m not sparing the time to find some just for the sake of making that post today.

 

This is the first of Bethke’s videos I remember seeing, and possibly part of the inspiration of his book:

Why I Hate Religion, But Love Jesus || Spoken Word || Jefferson Bethke

Sex, Marriage, & Fairytales || Spoken Word ||  Jefferson Bethke

Counterfeit Gods || Spoken Word || Jefferson Bethke

Who is God? What is He like?

Yesterday I wrote about a sermon I heard recently that has been impacting how I read my Bible. Today we’ll go on with the second resource that’s been inspiring my reading habits lately. Over at Desiring God, Noel Piper wrote an article about how she abandoned her usual Bible-in-a-Year plan for a more engaging way of reading, and I’ve fallen a little in love with it.
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Reading to listen

I have posted before Bible reading habits and plans. I’ve come across a couple of resources in the past few weeks that have shaped my current reading habits (you might call this flavour of the month, I tend to change things up frequently). Before we start, obviously primary considerations when reading the Bible devotionally are

a) What does the text mean? (draw your own mindmap from that concept involving historical and textual context, writer intent, original reader context, literary qualities, etc)

b) What might God be trying to say to me through it, or want me to get out of it?

Starting more specifically on the latter, we heard a sermon in church the other Sunday (entitled “Jesus’ Words” if you look for it) about

Crimea…

It’s probably just me, but every time I hear or read something about the current conflict in the Crimea, place names like Sevastopol and Simferopol, my mind immediately goes back to Jasper Fforde’s Thursday Next series?

If you haven’t read them, and you love literature, history, science fiction, and absurdity, or some of these, there’s a good chance this series is for you. I’ve read the term “comic fantasy” and I guess that fits…

Amazon, I am impressed.

See, I was expecting my copy of Terry Pratchett’s new novel Raising Steam to get here maybe today or tomorrow, given a two day shipping time. But Amazon definitely impressed me. Having preordered Raising Steam, they delivered it to me around lunchtime yesterday, the day of it’s release. Nice. 🙂

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And since my son is down for a very late (given it’s after midday) morning nap, I’m going to start reading. Have a good day!

Writer’s blot … well played satan

I’ve been in a bit of a writing blot lately. I don’t know what that actually means, or if I just coined it, but it is what came to my mind instead of (and far preferentially to) the ugly phrase “writer’s block.”

And yet, I am feeling as if I should journal more. But I don’t have much to say.
Well, maybe I do…

Spring Break

Schedule and availability: Unknown.

Yes it’s Spring Break. That means family time and irregular errands and fun and things. Might affect my writing opportunities.

We’ll see.

I have some reading to get to anyway, before Raising Steam arrives and takes over. I am nearly finished Fight! and The Irresistible Revolution. I also have a review e-copy of The Normans: From Raiders to Kings which is proving quite interesting, and may or may not merit a full review here.

Have a good week everyone 🙂
And stay out of at least as much trouble as I would 😉

Plenty of reading! :D Now for a plan.

Y’know, it’s interesting. True enough I love fiction – a good portion of the possession that I brought with me when I migrated to the ‘states were novels – but in the few years since I haven’t read many novels at all (comparatively speaking, I suppose).

When I started this log, I only had one novel on my reading horizon – Terry Pratchett’s Raising Steam. Now, merely a month later, I have three waiting for me to get stuck into, another to get around to, and Raising Steam due to be released a month from now. They are:

The Road to Jerusalem, by Jan Guillou, first of the trilogy that the Arn film/miniseries were based on

The King’s Fifth by Scott O’Dell, purportedly the basis or inspiration for the children’s television series The Mysterious Cities of Gold

American Gods by Neil Gaiman – which I’ve had for awhile but never got around to reading, but apparently there’s a TV series coming, so I should get around to it at some point.

The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan, first novel in The Wheel of Time series, which I decided to pick up after Adam‘s recommendation on a post over at 101 Books, but it might be a little while until I tackle that, as it is eight hundred pages alone, and The Wheel of Time is a long series.

That, and, as much as I tend to read several books concurrently, I don’t particularly enjoy doing that with novels – I tend to put everything else down when I get into a novel, and pick back up when I’ve finished it, at least the other novels and narrative style books that I have on the go.

I think I might try taking that approach with my other reading, actually, at least for a time. Lately I’ve been tending to acquire one book after another, starting them and winding up leaving them for the next book that piques interest. Birthday and Christmas season didn’t help that – too many gift cards and not enough reading time. I have to say Netflix hasn’t helped either. As far as non-fiction goes, I’m probably going to focus on finishing Fight by Preston Sprinkle, and then maybe Genius for Deception by Nicholas Rankin before starting The Lost World of Genesis One: Ancient Cosmology and the Origins Debate by John Walton.

For awhile now I’ve been uncomfortable with the traditional method of interpreting Genesis for scientific and literal-historical meaning. Walton prefers to view Genesis through the perspective of its original readers and context (hint – ancient narrativism and history were not written with modern conventions and expectations of literal accuracy as we would understand it). Should be interesting, from what I’ve read so far in Nate Claiborne’s exploration of the subject, this method seems much more logical and consistent, without requiring or excluding the conclusions of the scientific community (with some exceptions) while sitting much more comfortably with extant archaeological evidence.

But that’s another discussion for another blog. Right now I am to work on the washing up and putting laundry away, while watching Mulan II with my son. Ironically enough, I would probably be reading more if I wasn’t blogging about reading.