The Summer Challenge

June 3, 2008

Growing up as a boy I was sucker for dares. You know the type. I dare you to eat this earthworm. No way! Are you crazy? I double-dog dare you. Well, if you put it like that, so long Mr. Earthworm. This summer I want to dare you take the summer challenge. What’s the summer challenge, you ask? For the next 90 days, beginning June 4 until August 2, each evening dedicate yourself to read for 15 minutes each day. Turn off the TV 15 minutes earlier and cozy up to a good, theologically-sound, gospel-centered book. Get up 15 minutes earlier and dedicate yourself to 15 minutes of mental exercise. Grab a book on your way out the office door and read during lunch. Don’t know what to read? Allow me to provide a recommended reading list for the summer.

Summer Reading List

  • The Life and Diary of David Brainerd, Jonathan Edwards
  • Respectable Sins. Jerry Bridges
  • Culture Shift, Al Mohler
  • The Cross-Centered Life, CJ Mahaney
  • Humility, CJ Mahaney
  • Knowing God, J.I. Packer
  • Instruments in the Redeemer’s Hands, Paul Tripp
  • Don’t Waste Your Life, John Piper
  • Objects of His Affection, Scotty Smith
  • One Thing, Sam Storms
  • The Holiness of God, R.C. Sproul
  • What Is A Healthy Church, Mark Dever
  • The Message of the Old Testament, Mark Dever
  • The Message of the New Testament, Mark Dever
  • Do Hard Things, Harris (for Teens and Parents)
  • Teach Them Diligently, Lou Priolo, (Parenting)
  • The Age of Opportunity, Paul Tripp, (Parenting)
  • Don’t Make Me Count To Three, Ginger Plowman, (Parenting)
  • Shepherding a Child’s Heart, Ted Tripp, (Parenting)
  • My Savage My Kinsmen, Elisabeth Eliot
  • God’s Passion for His Glory, John Piper
  • Keeping the Heart, John Flavel
  • Family-Driven Faith, Voddie Baucham
  • Everyday Talk, John Younts

You certainly can’t read all of these books by reading 15 minutes daily, but you could probably read 4-5 over the next 90 days by reading 15 minutes daily.

Did you also know that reading has significant benefits? Here are just a few of the benefits nurtured by avid readers:

  • Read better, write better and concentrate better;
  • Are quicker to see subtleties;
  • Have an easier time processing new information;
  • Develop an ability to understand how other people think and feel;
  • Tend to be more flexible in their thinking and open to new ideas;
  • Weather personal problems better;

So there you have it. I dare you to take the summer challenge. No, I double-dog dare you! Now you’ve GOT to do it!

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