Relate: I love goodreads. If you don’t have a goodreads account, get one. If you do, friend me. Or not. I don’t use goodreads like one would facebook or other social media platforms. It isn’t made for that. I use goodreads pretty much for two things: I track what I’ve read and where I’m at with my annual goal (100 books), and I use it to look for more great books to read. If someone recommends a book to me, I will jump on goodreads to read some reviews.
Anyways, the other day I had a few minutes to kill as I waited for someone and I started looking through some of the books I have read a few years back. Some of those books I remember well. Others… they looked only vaguely familiar. I started thinking about what the difference was between those two categories. At first I thought I remembered the non-fiction better than the fiction but that wouldn’t be entirely accurate. Quality wasn’t always a factor either because some of the books I remembered well, I remembered not really enjoying. Finally it hit me. If I used that book in some way… I remembered it. If I pulled a quote or used it for an illustration on The River Walk or somewhere else, that book stuck. Those that had a major impact on my life I remembered best. For example, I read Mark Batterson’s All In a bit over a year ago, cover to cover, in a matter of hours. That book changed my life. That book is stuck deep.
React: Information plus application equals transformation. Don’t read on. Take that last sentence and write it down. Copy it and paste it up on your facebook wall. Ladies grab some lipstick and write it on the top of your bathroom mirror. OK, maybe that last is going a bit too far, but you get the idea. Information + Application = Transformation.
I am incredibly good at the information part. I am a natural born student. I love to learn. I love to read and research. Study is for me the best thing to do with a day off. Some of you think I am weird, but I know others are nodding your heads. You get me. What I am not good at is the application. I’ve read lots of great stuff on setting up and maintaining a budget. I’ve counseled others about it. But I’ve never really had one myself. I have read up plenty on time management and scheduling. I don’t think I’ve ever been able to run off a calendar for more than a few weeks. I am a treasure trove of great ideas… that I never apply… and therefore I lose them.
Solomon says, “Take hold of my instructions; don’t let them go. Guard them, for they are the key to life.” Unlike material possessions, ideas need to be guarded through use not from it. The way you protect an idea is to apply it. If you try to guard an idea by storing it away in a dark, guarded chamber of your mind, the next time you open up that door the idea will be lost. You hold on to a thought by repetitive application of it. That is how you can see your life and your world changed. Information + Application = Transformation.
God, more than anything else, I want to hold on to You. That means I need to live You out. As I do my best to learn all that I can of who You and what You have of me, help me to apply it. Help me to live it out. I want to see change in my own life even as I become more and more of an agent of transformation to my world. Let me live You. Let me bring You everywhere I go.