Do you think you don’t have time to read a book? I’ll tell you how to read two hundred this year. Seriously.
When asked the secret of his success, billionaire investor Warren Buffett pointed to a stack of books and said, “Read 500 pages like this every day. That’s how knowledge works. It builds up, like compound interest. All of you can do it, but I guarantee not many of you will.”
In fact, many of us don’t. The statistics about American reading habits are staggering—and not in a good way.
According to the Literacy Project Foundation, 44% of American adults don’t read a book in a year; and six out of 10 households do not even buy one book in a year. I find this shocking. But as I look at the trajectory of our culture, I’m not surprised.
So, how many books have you read this year?
Let me tell you something you already know—reading is critically important—especially for Christian believers. God after all, reveals Himself to us in the written words of Scripture. Think about it—when we read the Word, we place ourselves in the very presence of God.
In our Colson Fellows worldview program, we want to develop Christian leaders—leaders who can shape the culture in their communities. Over the course of nine months, we have our fellows read 16 books on history and theology and culture in addition to various articles. Because we agree with author Michael Hyatt that readers are leaders. And leaders are readers. Beyond helping us gather information and data, Hyatt says that reading makes us better thinkers, improves our people skills, and helps us master communication.
In addition to the spiritual, intellectual and relational benefits of reading, reading helps us combat stress and keeps our aging minds sharp.
Martin Luther once said, “If you want to change the world, pick up your pen and write.” I’d add that if you want to change your world, pick up a book and read.
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