(1) Number of Books I Own. Like nearly everybody else, I have no idea how many books I own. If I had to put a number on it, I would say in the mid-to-upper hundreds. 3 years of seminary certainly bolstered that number, but growing up in a family of book-lovers (my mom used to read books outloud to us at bedtime and on trips) gave me a headstart in my library. I have to say that I'm particularly proud of a set of very old, classic books that I received from my grandpa - some of them date back to the late 1800's!
(2) The Last Book I Bought was Real Sex (Lauren Winner), which my mom and I happened to notice while walking out of a Christian book store (after I'd critiqued almost everything else there). Technically, she bought it, but I'm the one reading it currently :)
(3) The Last Book I Read was Surprised by Joy (C.S. Lewis). I finished it on the plane - it was a good read, and I particularly enjoyed the last few chapters. I'm also 4/5 of the way through Lewis' The Weight of Glory.
(4) Five Books that are Significant to Me
- Dandelion Wine (Ray Bradbury). We read this in Mrs. Simmons' junior English class in high school, right before school let out, when the birds were singing and the flowers blooming right outside of our window. It is the quintessential summer read.
- Philippians (The Apostle Paul). I plan to memorize the whole book someday - I've already got chapter 4 down. I love Paul's expressions of joy in the midst of suffering.
- When God Weeps (Joni Eareckson Tada). This book had a profound influence on me and how I view suffering. The authors combine compassion and theology in a way that only people who have gone through suffering can do.
- The Holiness of God (RC Sproul). This was the first "reformed" book that I ever read, after it had been urged on me by my mom. I'd have to say that this book was instrumental in bringing my family into the reformed tradition.
- Shadow of the Almighty (Elisabeth Elliot). This is the lesser-known and more personal account of the life and death of modern-day martyr Jim Elliot (compared to Through Gates of Splendor). I consider this book significant for several reasons: it introduced me to the wonderful genre of Christian biography, it introduced me to Elisabeth Elliot's literature, and Elisabeth Elliot led me to a deep appreciation of Amy Carmichael and her literature, especially her poetry and the little book If.