I'm not usually one to make a list of New Year's Resolutions, but I always have a general idea of things I'd like to be more consistent about in the next twelve months. One that is perpetually on my list is to read more good books. I see this hope echoed around my social media sphere as many of us envision a quieter year with more time for reading and reflection.
A few years ago my husband and I established a competition to spur one another on to read more books. For each page read, we put $.01 in our individual jars, and at the end of the competition the one with the most money in his or her jar got to decide what we did with the money from both jars. This was motivating and provided accountability, but while I read more good books that year, I didn't always have someone with whom I could discuss what I was reading.
This year I want to try something in this space--a eading group. I have a few books in mind that I think would be good ones for discussion, and I'm open to other suggestions as well. But here's my idea:
- A group forms here and in a private Facebook group to read the same book
- We alternate between non-fiction and fiction titles each month
- We discuss the book throughout the month as we work our way through
- Group members can contribute reflections on their own blogs, in the Facebook group and blog comments, or by emailing posts to me for publication on my blog
I'm hopeful that this will be a time of mutual encouragement and accountability as we read and grow together. I think there is much to be gained from reading in community--working out together how what we encounter in the written word is changing us and wrestling through where we may disagree.
I went ahead and chose a book for January. It's one I've heard great things about, and I think the topic is perfect for starting a fresh year and season.
You Are What You Love: The Spiritual Power of Habit by James K. A. Smith.
You don't have to join every month, but if this one looks like a good read to you, let me know you'll be joining us in the comments below and/or by hopping over to join our private Facebook group HERE.
I'm praying this will be a place for mutual encouragement and joy, that we will build community around the words we read and the ones we write.
I'll be posting more as I start working my own way through the book. Please invite others whom who think would enjoy this endeavor.
And Happy New Year!