Jon Acuff created this challenge called the “Empty Shelf” challenge. Basically, you empty a shelf at home and try to fill it by reading more books during 2014. (Wow. It seriously feels weird to type that!) The empty shelf is supposed to motivate you to read more. For more info read his post here: http://acuff.me/2013/12/empty-shelf-challenge/
I haven’t actually emptied a shelf yet. Mine are too full! I think I’m going to use the top of my bookshelf for my special empty shelf. I’m not going to be super hardcore about this, but I’d like to get back to reading more and watching tv less (aka Netflix after the kids go to bed). So hopefully, this will motivate me!
I just finished my first book:
Prison Letters was given to me by a friend at church. It’s short and interesting. Basically it’s a collection of letters, diary entries, and secret little notes written to and from Corrie and Betsie ten Boom.
Some of the letters are sad, others deal with daily prison life or requests for items to be sent. Some letters are hard to follow because of all the names and situations mentioned.
Overall the book was interesting and convicting. The ten Boom sisters had such a joyful attitude throughout their imprisonment and rested in the peace of Jesus. Here is my favorite excerpt:
“The horrors of Ravensbruck, especially Betsie’s death, caused me to wake up to reality. When I did, I was able to see that when all the securities of the world are falling away, then you realize, like never before, what it means to have your security in Jesus.
It was not until December 28,1944, when, through a miracle, I was set free, just one week before all the women my age and older were put to death. I was free and knew then as I know now it was my chance to take to the world God’s message of the victory of Jesus Christ in the midst is the deepest evil of man.”
And this part also equally impacted me: (it’s part of a letter Corrie wrote to the person that they believed turned them into the Germans in the first place)
Today I heard that most probably you are the one who betrayed me. I went through 10 months of concentration camp. My father died after
9 days of imprisonment. My sister died in prison, too.
The harm you planned was turned into good for me by God. I came nearer to Him. A severe punishment is awaiting you. I have prayed for you, that The Lord may accept you if you will repent… I have forgiven you everything. God will also forgive you everything, if you ask Him…”
What faith! Brings a whole new meaning to “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.”
This definitely convicted me for those times that I am angry about petty things (especially in comparison to the trials the ten Boom sisters experienced) and when I find it hard to forgive others!
Now onto book #2…I still have to decide what’s next!