That’s a Lot of Pages!

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In Luke 14:27-28, Jesus cautioned those who would follow Him to “count the cost”.

Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?

In context, Jesus was pointing out that there is a very real cost to following Him.  We can expect to be rejected, scorned, ridiculed, and (in extreme cases) killed because of our decision to be His disciples – sometimes by our former friends and closest family members.

While my “ECPC Reading Challenge” doesn’t have nearly the same challenges, I still thought it was wise to sit down and “count the cost” of what lay before me.  Last night I added the books I acquired at the East Coast Pastors Conference to LibraryThing.com.  It’s a fantastic online service that lets me keep an inventory of my books. They offer a lifetime membership for $25.  I highly recommend it for anyone who needs to keep track of their books. Here are the stats for my ECPC reading challenge:

  • Total Books: 43
  • Total Pages: 9,877

Wow, that’s a lot of pages!  I did some quick calculations and found that if I’m going to finish before next year’s Pastors Conference, I’ll need to read an average of 38 pages each day (assuming that I read at least five days each week).  When I look at it that way, it doesn’t seem so overwhelming.

For those who are interested, here’s a list of the 43 books I’ll be reading.

 

  • A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23 (Keller, W. Phillip)
  • Amy Carmichael of Dohnavur (Houghton, Frank L.)
  • Begin: A Journey Through Scriptures for Seekers and New Believers (Ham, Ken)
  • Come Down, Lord (Ellsworth, Roger)
  • Every Day With Jesus (Laurie, Greg)
  • George Muller: Delighted In God (Steer, Roger)
  • How Long O Lord (Carson, D.A.)
  • Intensive Faith (Finfrock, Dan)
  • Invasion of Wales by the Spirit Through Evan Roberts (Stewart, James A.)
  • Living Water (Smith, Chuck)
  • Love Your Neighbor (Geisler, Norman)
  • Marriage, Divorce, and Remarriage in the Bible (Adams, Jay E.)
  • New Testament Study Guide (Smith, Chuck)
  • Ordained of the Lord (English, E. Schuyler)
  • Original Intent (Barton, David)
  • Psycho Heresy (Bobgan, Martin and Deidre)
  • Psychology Debunked: Revealing the Overcoming Life (Bazler, Lisa and Ryan)
  • Reasoning From the Scriptures with the Jehovah’s Witnesses (Rhodes, Ron)
  • Refuting Evolution (Sarfati, Jonathan)
  • Seeking the Face of God (Lloyd-Jones, D. Martyn)
  • So What’s the Difference (Ridenour, Fritz)
  • Spiritual Depression (Lloyd-Jones, D. Martyn)
  • Standing In Grace (Guzik, David)
  • Taking Back the Good Book (Kroll, Woodrow)
  • The Battle for the Bible (Lindsell, Harold)
  • The Bible Speaks to Our Times (Redpath, Alan)
  • The Christian Counselor’s Manual (Adams, Jay E.)
  • The Creation Answers Book (Various)
  • The Cult of the Virgin (Miller, Elliot)
  • The End of Christian Psychology (Bobgan, Martin and Deidre)
  • The Gospel According to Grace (Smith, Chuck)
  • The Gospel According to Rome (McCarthy, James G.)
  • The Kingdom of God (Lloyd-Jones, D. Martyn)
  • The Making of a Man of God (Redpath, Alan)
  • The Royal Route to Heaven and Blessings Out of Buffetings (Redpath, Alan)
  • The Trinity: Evidence and Issues (Morey, Robert)
  • Victorious Christian Service (Redpath, Alan)
  • When Storms Come (Smith, Chuck)
  • Why Grace Changes Everything (Smith, Chuck)
  • A Pocket Guide to Apemen (Answers In Genesis)
  • A Pocket Guide to Dinosaurs (Answers In Genesis)
  • A Pocket Guide to Noah’s Ark (Answers In Genesis)
  • A Pocket Guide to the Bible (Answers In Genesis)

 

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2 Responses to That’s a Lot of Pages!

  1. Joe Hamm says:

    Dear Pastor Jim,
    It is good to hear from you as Beth and I truly miss you folks. Just a story about Lent. When I first gave my life to Christ I was a pack-a-day smoker and decided to give up cigarettes for Lent. Beth was quite thrilled about it as she assumed that if I did, by the time Lent was over, I would be over the cravings and addiction. On the morning of Ash Wednesday I put away my cancer sticks and that was that. For six weeks. On Easter morning I woke up, rushed to the closet and pulled out a pack of Marlboro cigarettes and a pack of matches. Yes, I am ashamed to say, I lit up a smoke and was in the process of inhaling that wonderful (at least to me at the time), cloud of carcinogenic, tar and nicotine laden gas and enjoyed my first ‘hit’ in six weeks. Beth came into the dining room and saw me and went ballistic! I said: “Hey Babe, I said that I was giving them up for Lent. Lent is over.” She thought that I was crazy about the whole thing and still does! That was the spring of 1977. I gave them up for good, ‘cold turkey’, at the definite direction of the Holy Spirit in the spring of 1982. Praise God for his direction, guidance and love!

    Joe

    P.S. I have read a number of works by D.A. Carson for some Master’s courses and find his grasp of theology very sound indeed.

    • Pastor Jim says:

      Joe,

      It’s great to hear from you. That’s a great story about Lent. I just finished the second book on my list (Why Grace Changes Everything by Chuck Smith). A lot of it is devoted to the futility of trying to give up a “bad habit” in our own strength – which is what people often do at Lent. One of my favorite passages is Philippians 2:13, “for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.” He gives us both the will (desire) and the power (to do) what will please Him. That’s amazing to me.

      PS: I’ve read a number of things by DA Carson too. I’m really looking forward to digging in to some more of his books.