I love to read. Do you? You should. Books allow us to travel all around the world without ever leaving our home. 

Books help us to learn  new things. Books can challenge us. Books can change an individual, a family, and even a nation!

Books are powerful. I’ve been thinking about some of the books I have read. Many are good, some are bad. Some of the things in the books I read I don’t always agree with. 

I was talking to Nikki earlier this week about some of the books I’ve read and how I have lived them. 

Here’s what I mean. When I see something in a book that may be a good idea, I like to give it a shot. There are some parameters that I have. God, His book the Bible, are always the final authority and standard. Reading books is like eating fish. Eat the meat…Spit out the bones. Digest what is good. Eliminate what’s not good. I filter what I read from books written by man with the words that I find in the book written by God (the Bible). 

When I got into preaching in 2009, there was a book that had a big influence on me. 

It was “Rich dad poor dad”by Robert Kiyosaki.” One of my doctors I worked with when I was with Pfizer recommended it to me and I read it. One of the principles found in the book was to surround yourself with people smarter than you. When it came time to figuring out how I would get into preaching, this book had a big influence on me. I wanted to go through the preacher training program at the Dowlen Road Church of Christ, because of the two preachers there, Max and David. They knew more about preaching than me. It was a big sacrifice financially to go through the program but I’m glad I did it. I wanted to be around them. I’m still around them today. We all work together. I’m glad I read that book. 

I lived that principle from that book. 

I’ve done the same with other books.

 I’m living the principles found in Bill Phillips books “Body for Life, Transformation, and Eating for Life.” Not only am I living these, but I’ve been able to meet and workout with Bill! How cool is that! I use the eating for life book everyday. I use the principles from the other books daily also. 

Live the books! 

I recently read a book called “The Brain That Changes Itself” by Norman Doidge. Great book! I’m using a recommended learning program thst assists young children with my son JOSHUA. I’ve learned so much about neuroplasticity. 

Im living the book!  

I am a Dave Ramsey fan. I love his books like  “Financial Peace” and “Total Money Makeover.” Excellent books! I lived the books. I taught a class on Financial Peace. My wife and I became debt free!!! Yes! Although for full transparency we now have some debt. We will become debt free again soon. Live the books and keep living the books. 

Live the books! 

I read “I don’t have enough faith to be an atheist” by Norman Geisler and Frank Turek. After reading it I taught a three month Bible class on it. It is a excellent book. I’m currently going through an online class going through the material again. 

Live the books! 

I read “Crucial Conversations” by Kerry Patterson and Joseph Grenny! We’re using the principles from the book that are found in the Scriptures and teaching a Bible class called “Crucial Conversations.” 

Live the books! 

Last year I read a book called “Deep Work” by  Cal Newport. Wow! After reading it, I immediately bought the rest of his books. It’s changed my thought process, how I work, and greatly increased my productivity. 

Live the books. 

I read “Power Sleep” by Dr. James B. Maas last year. This helped me as I began the transition of trying to live two days in one (read my blog on that) by waking up early. I learned a lot about sleeping habits and how the body works. 

Live the books! 

I have joked around about changing my name to Benaiah after reading “In a pit with a lion on a snowy day” and “Chase the lion” by Mark Batterson. That book helped me with overcoming some fears. These two books will really motivate you! Be a lion chaser! I preached a lesson called Chase the lion. I chased the lion and went to Mexico last year as I was trying to learn Spanish. I preached that sermon in Spanish. No fear baby! Chase the lion down into that pit. 

Live the books.

After reading a book from Rory Vaden called “Take the stairs” I signed up again for Toastmasters. I was so fired up. Rory talked about his journey through Toastmasters, which was pretty amazing. I recommend Toastmasters for those who may be afraid of public speaking. 

Live the books. 

I began using memory palaces after reading “Moonwalking with Einstein” by JOSHUA Foer. It works! If you’re looking for a way to improve your memory give it a shot. 

Live the books.

Recently, I read “Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less” by Greg McKeown. It has helped me to learn how to say “No” and so much more. 

Live the books!

Last year I came across an author named Shannon Ethridge. She has written a lot of books dealing with marriage and sexual intimacy. I’ve read her book called “Passion Principles.” Great book! My wife and I had an opportunity to meet her and have a couple of counseling sessions with her. Shannon also helps those who would like to become an author one day. She is helping me with the process of writing a book (100 pages in so far). The book will be a fitness book, that has largely been influenced by Bill Phillips, his program, and opportunities I have had with him. 

Live the books. 

Choose Yourself is a book I read recently by James Altoucher. He’s a guy with so many great ideas. I implemented one of his tactics of writing out 10 new ideas everyday. It’s so hard to do. I failed to do that so many times, but it does get the creative juices flowing. He’s part of the reason I have begun this blog (and Shannon). Since starting the blog a few months ago I’ve had viewers from (the U.S, Canada, Costa Rica, Ireland, Uganda, South Africa, Australia, United Kindgdom, Germany, Zimbabwe, Japan,Puerto  Rico, European Union, Brazil, El Salvador, New Zealand, Hong Kong SAR China, Belize, and Mexico)! Wow! Thanks for reading. Creating a blog was a great idea. Next up is a YouTube Channel, website (in the works), podcast, then book published through Amazon (hoping to get one published by Father’s Day for kids without dads). 

Live the books! 

There are so many other books that I have learned from. But I can’t end this blog without speaking about THE BOOK…The Bible! 

If you look at the photo above the Bible is on the bottom. Not because it’s the least important. Because it’s the foundation in my life. It’s my most important book. Truth is, any book you read with good principles are already found in the Scriptures. 

Do you have questions about $$$? Before Dave Ramsey, there was the book of Proverbs! The Bible is filled with financial wisdom. 

Questions about the sexual relationship? Before Shannon there was the Song of Solomon. The Bible is filled with wisdom for married couples. 

Questions about focus and working hard? Before there was “Deep Work” you have the wisdom from the Proverbs. 

Questions about the importance of sleep and rest? Read about how Jesus took naps. Read in the Scriptures how Jesus instructed His apostles to rest. 

Questions about waking up early and becoming more productive? Read Mark 1:34-35 about how Jesus woke up early in the morning for prayer, before His day got too busy. 

Folks, all that we need is found in the Scriptures. There’s nothing wrong reading other books, but be sure that you read the Bible! No wait, make sure that you Live What’s Written In The Bible. It’s not just another book! It’s inspired! It’s the very words of God! 

We will be judged by the words in this book, John 12:48-49. 

God has revealed His will for man in words that were recorded and perserved for us! Do you see how important reading is? 

Live the book! 

“But prove yourself doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves.” James 1:22 from THE BOOK. 

Live the books!