Class 47: “The Power of Reading” (Part 4)



Today, we will continue our study titled, THE POWER OF READING.

Allow me to begin with a quote from G.M. Trevelyan. He said, “Education has produced a vast population able to read but unable to distinguish what is worth reading, an easy prey to sensations and cheap appeals.”

Now, please pull out your text and your digital study guide or follow along on the screen. First, I will read a portion of the corresponding letter from the book, Letters to Young Black Women. Then we will proceed with this lesson:

While there are many great reading materials out there, there are some books which you need to stay away from. All books, sad to say, are not good books. Stay away from books or magazines that are pornographic in nature. Also, stay away from books and magazines that deal with gossip and foolishness. This kind of reading material does not advance you; it only slows you down from reaching your goals. Let me touch on romance novels. I know that I am getting ready to get into a whole lot of trouble here, but as a young, single, Christian lady, you do not need to be reading erotic novels that will get you all stirred up in your passions, knowing that at this time in your life you cannot fulfill them, or you should not try to fulfill them. There are many good Christian-based novels out there today that glorify God, honor Christ, and teach great life lessons. Read those!

I encourage you to keep your mind occupied with reading good and wholesome books. Always keep a good book with you so that if you have to wait at the airport, or wait in the doctor’s office, you can use that time wisely by reading. Another thing that I like to do is listen to audio books while I drive, instead of listening to music. What a wonderful, easy way to get a good read in.

Now we will discuss three more reasons you should read:

1. Reading makes you an interesting individual.

You may never get to use half of the knowledge you gain from books. But having a library of information at your disposal will come in handy when you are writing, speaking, listening to others, or find yourself in an academic or otherwise scholarly environment. When in conversation with others, you will be able to hold your own, think for yourself, analyze what is being said instead of looking for the nearest exit. You will also be able to tell when a conversation is stimulating and when it is not getting past the ceiling. Reading gives you the capacity to engage with a wide variety of people and improve your understanding.

2. Reading improves your imagination.

Many people are limited not by the views of other people but by their own perspectives. Reading the views, ideas, and opinions of other people will help to expand your knowledge and understanding of the world around you. It will help you to be able to think big and see what is possible. By reading, your mind becomes responsible for creating an image of what you read in your head instead of having an image set in front of you as is the case when watching TV.

3. Reading helps you to look at the world with a critical mind and discover ideas about how to change it.

A 2007 study done by the National Endowment for the Arts reveals that people who read are three times more likely to visit museums, attend plays or concerts, and create their own artwork. They are also just as likely to play sports, attend sporting events, or participate in outdoor activities. People who read are also twice as likely as non-readers to volunteer and do charity work. Readers are active participants in the world and their involvement allows them to view the world with a critical mind that helps them to see problems and work to find or create solutions.

Jane Austen said, “I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading. How much sooner one tires of any thing than of a book.”

In our next class, we will begin a new study, “STRIVE TO KNOW WHAT YOU WANT TO DO WITH YOUR LIFE AT AN EARLY AGE”.

Now, like many of you, I grew up in a very religious and church-going family, and during that time, I often heard the phrase “Being Saved.” Now, much of what church people said “being saved” was back then especially, in my community, is wrong according to the Bible. I wrote an article about it titled “On ‘Being Saved’ in Black America” which is available for you to read free of charge on our website, Right now, I want to share with you very briefly what the Bible says “being saved” really is.

First, understand that you need to be saved because you are a sinner. Romans 3:23 says, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, understand that a horrible punishment — eternal Hell — awaits those who are not saved. In Matthew 25:41, Jesus Christ said that God will say to those who are not saved, “depart from me ye cursed into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels.”

Third, realize that God loves you very much and wants to save you from Hell. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” If you want to be saved from Hell and be guaranteed a home in Heaven, simply believe in Jesus Christ, that He died, was buried, and rose from the dead for your sins, and then call upon Him in prayer and ask Him to save your soul. And believe me, He will.

Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” That is the most important decision you will ever make.

God bless you and keep you until we meet for our next class.