I decided that this is not such an exercise in vanity and nerdiness as I first thought. It gives me the opportunity to do some fun reflecting on the past 30 years of reading. (Maybe 31) I started my theological reading with my membership in the WORD book club, soon after I discovered Keith Miller and Bruce Larson’s The Edge of Adventure (I haven’t gotten to Keith Miller’s shelf yet in my hotspots that I’m adding to my bookshelf photo (in my post from last night). But I do have some John Killinger, Bruce Larson, Bob Benson, and Elton Trueblood, all of whom were a part of those years of reading in college of the writers in the “Lay Renewal” movement. It was a time of which the present Emergent Church movement today reminds me. There was a movement, sort of a Protestant Vatican II, that called for more authenticity and stressed small groups. My high school youth group experience was flaovored with quite a bit of Lyman Coleman stuff (he was the “Serendipity” guy; wrote a lot of oddly shaped books with glossy pages spalshed with lots of photos, and featured lots of “Ice Breaker” questions. I have an NIV Serendipity Bible for Study Groupsthat has Small Group Questions in the margins of every page of the Old and New Testaments (sometimes , in obscure places in the Old Testamant, the “Group Questions became quite a stretch to relate them to something interesting) We also had a coffeehouse at our church in the early 70’s when I was a young high schooler.
The top shelf, to the right of and including “The Book of Bebb” are several Frederick Buechner books, whom I statrted reading after an interview with him by the Wittenberg Door (one of my other 70’s reading fare— which stretched into the 90’s until Youth Specialities, who published The Door sold it to another publisher. Mike Yaconelli was the name associated with that mag, and it was full of satire along with some really top notch interviews and Back Door articles (the Back Door was the regular Yaconelli article that was always one of my favorite pieces. The little brown boxes to the left of my INterpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible that you can see the bottom of sitting atop the bookshelf, are full of back issues of The Wittenberg Door (later renamed to simply “The Door”), as well as old issues of The Other Side and Sojourners, both of which I started getting in the 80’s. The Other Side has now ceased publication. I stopped taking it sometime after I started taking Sojourners.
Following on the heels of all this reading in “Lay Renewal”, was my reading about the Church of the Saviour in books by Elizabeth O’Connor (top shelf, middle, closeup photo here) More to come in a bit.