Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Today while around the table with a bunch of other clergy from UMCs in the area one of the pastors asked what we were reading of interest these days.

I answered two-fold:
Dave Ramsey's "Total Money Makeover" and Terry Goodkind's "Law of Nines"

As I listened to the others around the table I heard non-fiction after non-fiction and theology book after theology book.

I began to wonder if I was the only pastor who reads fiction and Sci-Fi at that. I am excited about the continuation of The Wheel of Time series originated by Robert Jordan and being completed by Brandon Sanderson. I read through all of the works by Terry Goodkind and Terry Brooks. I enjoyed the Eragon series and several others.

I was struck if this kind of reading of Sci-Fi was the same kind of dirty little secret that reading Comics is. In particular I love those Apocalyptic literature pieces. I love the debate of theology that comes in reading folks like Terry Goodkind. I am engaged in the learning of other religious traditions that comes in reading and talking about Robert Jordan's works. Terry Brooks writes such inspiring works, and challenges my assumptions here and there, as well as suffering simple lessons in broad strokes.

All the best to you in your reading.


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At September 16, 2009, Anonymous David Youngdale said...

Well, David, my own "dirty little secret" is not in reading sci-fi or comics, but in watching spaghetti western dvd's. Needless to say there was some objectionable material in most of these films. Conversely, most of the time there were some very good moral values, and after all the violence and gunplay, it was always a surprising and welcome relief to walk away from a film that you could feel good about watching.

At September 17, 2009, Blogger Daniel Wilcox said...

Hi David,
Well, I've not been a youth pastor for a long time, but I've always been a reader of science fiction and historical fiction...mostly for the joy and fun.

But also such stories dwell very much on how individuals live out their worldviews. As you point out science fiction especially deals with deep philosophical and theological issues.

Of course, I read a lot of history and theology too--that's a given. My wife thinks it's funny that while most guys are watching the superbowl, I am reading some tome of 16th century church history.

In the Light of God,

Daniel Wilcox

At September 19, 2009, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've read many things in fiction that make me think. Sometimes I have to wade through objectionable language or scenes, in the process, but perhaps that same language is what will grab others' attention to the important messages.
One I just finished is a novel by Steve Lopez (of the L.A. TIMES and author of THE SOLOIST) called THIRD AND INDIANA. Now I need something more lighthearted.
Karen Scott (not really Anon)


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