For the past few years I have been very carefull about what I read in my spare time. As a rule, I don't read hardly any fiction. (In fact, I can't remember when the last time I read a book that wasn't true.) The reason for this is because when I was in my early teens I became obsessed with Christian romance novels. Were they bad? Not exactly. . . that is, not until they became more important to me then the things of God.I didn't realize that what I was doing was so bad until I read an article by Isobel Kuhn, a missionary to China in the 1900's. She wrote about the nights she would stay up until midnight soaking up every last word of the lates fiction she was fascinated with, and then would try her best to keep her eyes open long enough to read a few verses of her Bible before going to bed. She compared herself to someone who eats nothing but candy, sweet dainties, and soda pop, and afterwards is left with no appitite for meat and potatoes.
It seemed that we had something in common other then our love for fiction. Neither one of us knew how to do things in moderation which leaves us with a great problem. While I read all those interesting books my chores went undone and my school work was done half heartedly. On one occasion mama had to take my books away until I started being more responsible with my time!
Since I knew my weaknesses, I decided to give up fiction entirely unles it was something that would be benneficial to my spiritual life. Recently while I skimmed through a book my sister is reading, I Kissed Dating Goodby by Josh Harris, something he wrote caught my eye. He said something to the effect that, different people have to limit themselves to avoid lustful thoughts. Some have to avoid watching TV, some decide not to go to the beach, and others quit reading romance novals. When I read that I felt like shouting "that's it!" That was exactly why I put away fiction books but I just didn't know how to say it. Those books made me live in a dream world that didn't exsist and never would, and they were doing nothing but feed my lust for fleshly things! And when it comes to lust it is hard to controll it with moderation.
I'm ashamed to say that I don't read very much at all now, but when I do make myself do it I usually read books on missionaries and Christian living. Among my favorite are Quest for the High Places by Natalie Nyquist, A Young Woman After God's Own Heart by Elizabeth George, Authentic Beauty by Leslie Ludy, and What Do I Know About My God by Mardi Collier.
I will admit that I love the old classics such as Little Women the Anne of Green Gables Series, books that I think all girls should read at least once! But now I read books that I know God would be pleased to see me read. And if I ever need a good book to read I know just where to go! You can go there to . . . Katie is always reading something good and she gives great book reviews at her blogs God Will Bless Those Who Wait, and In the Hands Of God. Remember, we should want to please God in every area of our lives, and it should be no different when it comes to the books we read.