Every year I receive a box of books (about 24 in all) that I have agreed to read and critique for a Christian book judging organization. I love to read so this is not a big deal. For some it would be as I have to read them within about three months. I actually look forward to reading the books, but I must admit that most of the books really aren’t that good. At times, I wonder just how the book was ever published. I say this knowing that I am not the best writer in the world either, but I am being asked to give my opinion of what an author has written.
In the end, one author in each category (and there are many) is dubbed the winner. They receive some prizes and significant recognition at the annual conference/banquet, which is held in Hollywood.
I must admit that would be quite an honor, but more importantly, for me it’s all about the content of the book. Writing is an amazing vehicle for communication, and yet, in many circles, little of it is done or at least done well. Some will tell you that we are moving away from the written page (on paper), and before too long we will do everything digitally. I don’t know about that, but it seems there is still plenty of room and time for actually writing books about significant issues, regardless of how the end product looks and feels.
I have noticed or at least made an observation about my own denomination that I want to share. We do have books that have been written throughout our history. Much of what has been written has been more about our history or our theological beliefs. Little has been written by our own authors about life issues or ministry matters that would be helpful and encouraging for all to read, especially young pastors and leaders coming up in the ministry.
I have often wondered, why? I know plenty of people who are experienced and bright. Why don’t they write and use their gift to bless the life and ministry of others? Or more to the point, I want them to write and be used by God to make a difference for the advancement of the kingdom of God. I am not the greatest writer but I am committed to writing, and by God’s grace he will use my thoughts and experience to bless, encourage and equip others to do the same.
Dr. Thomas S. Warren serves as the Director of Nurture for Advent Christian General Conference.