Putting my Bible on the Shelf(ari)

I just discovered a great new website for booklovers called Shelfari.  Thanks Jen for introducing me to it! 

This site lets you list all your books on a virtual bookshelf.  People can visit your shelf to see what you’re currently reading or get your opinion on books that you’ve read (Click here to visit my Shelfari shelf).  The site also allows you to network with friends and join groups based on similar reading habits.  One feature that I’ve been enjoying has been its suggestions of people who share similar books on their lists.  I’ll visit those people’s shelves to get ideas for future reading.

I’ve been at this for a couple weeks, and it is becoming an addiction far worse than Facebook ever was (By the way, you can add a Shelfari widget to Facebook as well).  I’ll check to see what new books my friends have added, write some more reviews, add some more books I forgot to list, contribute to my ever growing “wish list,” and snoop on what other people are reading. 

A couple days ago, in my snooping, I noticed that another woman with similar reading tastes listed a Bible on her bookshelf.  At that point, I probably had around 40 books on my shelf, but I hadn’t listed a single Bible.  Even worse, after I listed a couple of my favorite Bible versions (The Life Application Study Bible and the new ESV Literary Study Bible), I didn’t bother putting them in my top 10 list of books.  In other words, I had Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice ahead of the Bible.  I needed to get my priorities straight.

In a conversation with a deacon at my church recently, he told me that he’d rather read the Bible than watch TV or read anything else.  That completely caught me off guard.  I can’t say that I share that opinion.  Most of the time, I’d rather read than watch TV, but for me, the Bible isn’t going to top the stack of fiction I have sitting on my nightstand. 

Don’t get me wrong. I like reading my Bible.  I do it every day.  But I don’t know if I get the same sense of enjoyment from it that I get out of other books.  Can I honestly say that I truly love reading my Bible?

There are a lot of reasons why I put other books ahead of the Bible.  Perhaps with my daily devotion to reading it, I’ve made it more of a chore and less of a privilege.  There’s also the fact that the Bible can be pretty hard hitting, where Jane Austen isn’t going to convict me of too much, except a little pride, or some prejudice here and there.  When I read the Bible, I expect to be transformed, and sometimes, I just want to read for fun, for escapism.    

I want to be like the Psalmist who wrote Psalm 119, who can’t get enough of reading the Bible:  “Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long” (119:97).  Over and over, he mentions how much he loves reading God’s word.  He calls the law “my delight” (119:77 & 174), and he prays to understand God’s word even more: “Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law” (119:18).  This is my prayer today, as well.  I too want to see the “wonderful things” in this book and desire it more than any other books.

I put the Bible as my #1 book on my shelf (click here to see the list).  My mind knows this, and I’m praying that my heart and desires follow. 


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4 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. ooooo…. this is nice!!!

    Do you know how to add the shelf to your wordpress blog? I can’t get mine to work!

  2. Hey Keisha!

    Oh, believe me, I’ve tried. I checked out the WordPress help topic section, and it said that unless the site has an an .html only source, it’s not going to work. In other words, WordPress is really picky about letting us use Flash other fancy stuff like that in our Widgits. Shelfari is supported by lots of other blog sites, but just not WordPress. I think we should start a petition to get an official Shelfari widget for wordpress!

    For now, I just have a link on my “bookshelf” page. It’s not exactly pretty, but it gets the word out.

  3. Great post! I’m glad you love Shelfari. I’m hoping to spend more time updating my page in December – it’s been a busy couple a weeks here at the Zug household.

  4. I can honestly say that, by the grace of God, I love reading my Bible. I have a longing to read it day and night. My problem is not having the desire, it is not doing it nearly as much as my God-implanted desire dictates. I’m hoping to change this. I’ve taking up listening to the Bible at work through headphones, and it has literally changed my life. I am a brand new person – no exaggeration. I’d encourage you to follow this sort of leading to read more. Ask for more of the Spirit as you do so, and God will answer you. He may even give you so much that you will feel overwhelmed! But don’t stop or get intimidated 🙂

    AL: Listening to the Bible is a great idea. Thanks for sharing.

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