In case you haven’t heard of it, there’s this wonderful book-swapping site called Paperbackswap. Now the name is slightly misleading because it’s not just paperbacks that get swapped, but hardcovers and audio books as well. You list the books you’re willing to mail out on the site. When someone requests them, you mail it out (paying for postage). When that person receives it and marks it received, you get a credit that you can then use to request a book from someone else.

This is a great way to get rid of unwanted books (or books you’ve finished and want to get rid of) and obtain new ones relatively cheaply (cost of postage and a swap fee of 49 cents). You can also add books that aren’t currently available on a wishlist so that if someone posts that book, you get a notification so you can request it if you still want it.

So I broke my “no-book-buy” freeze and bought 2 books. This was after I requested several books through paperbackswap. And then I requested 4 books from inter-library loan – Funny Story: So part of my no-book-buy freeze was to not request any library books as the whole point of the freeze was to get through my own physical books. My local library requires you to renew your library card annually on your birthday. I forgot to do that this year and as I was trying not to request books it hadn’t really been an issue. Until Thursday when I decided to request a few and remembered that I had forgotten to renew. Well, it was snowy on Thursday and I didn’t really want to go out, but I couldn’t renew over the phone. So after a brief try at using my old library card from where we previously lived, I ended up going out to renew my library card. I think I officially qualify as being addicted to books!

The good news is that I have been able to read through my own physical books for the last couple months, so I was making progress. After this library request, I will go back on my no-book-buy freeze and try to go longer this time. 🙂



Instruments in the Redeemer’s Hands

Instruments in the Redeemer's Hands: People in Need of Change Helping People in Need of ChangeInstruments in the Redeemer’s Hands: People in Need of Change Helping People in Need of Change by Paul David Tripp
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Really liked this book! Wish I owned it so that I could underline in it but would probably end up underlining half the book! The importance of the heart when it comes to changing behavior. It’s also convicting – look at my own heart to see what controls me, what am I making an idol of in my life? What prompts me to do the things I do? Challenging and helpful book.

“Our deepest problem is not experiential, biological, or relational; it is moral, and it alters everything. It distorts our identity, alters our perspective, derails our behavior, and kidnaps our hope.”
“Rebellion is the inborn tendency to give in to the lies of autonomy, self-sufficiency, and self-focus.”
“If my heart is the source of my sin problem, then lasting change must always travel through the pathway of my heart. It is not enough to alter my behavior or to change my circumstances. Christ transforms people by radically changing their hearts.”
“Whatever rules the heart will exercise inescapable influence over the person’s life and behavior.”
What or who are you worshipping?
“…God is intent on owning our hearts unchallenged.”
“We forget that God’s primary goal is not changing our situations and relationships so that we can be happy, but changing us through our situations and relationships so that we will be holy.”
“Truth that is not spoken in love ceases to be truth because it is twisted by other human agendas. Love that is not guided by truth ceases to be love because it is divorced from God’s agenda.”

How to Choose a Bible Version by Robert Thomas

How To Choose A Bible Version: Revised Edition Includes The Esv & TnivHow To Choose A Bible Version: Revised Edition Includes The Esv & Tniv by Robert L. Thomas
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoy reading about how translations came about and the history behind them. This book gives a brief overview of the history of the different English translations, those that are in the Tyndale tradition and those that are not. It also talks about the manuscripts that translators use and the age of those manuscripts, which could affect their reliability. Fascinating stuff! It also has a value system for determining how close to the original a particular translation is and at what point a translation goes from being considered a “literal” translation to a “free” translation or a paraphrase. These are also called formal and dynamic equivalence.
Interesting read and good information to help in determining what translation to best use. The closer to the original language the better when it comes to studying the Bible. Personally I prefer the NASB and the ESV and both of these hold up well in the literal translation category. But no one translation is perfect so it is a good idea to use multiple translations for study.

*Library book

The Call of the Library

I’m incredibly blessed to live in a metropolitan area with a great inter-library system. My own city’s library is pretty extensive, but I also have the option of requesting books from other Michigan libraries through the inter-library loan system. With some Christian colleges in the system, I’m able to get a hold of some solid theological books and other Christian reading that might not otherwise be available in secular libraries. But then I run into the problem of requesting books to borrow when I already have a mountain of my own books that need to be read. I usually rationalize with the response that it keeps me from buying more books, so it’s actually saving me money.

Here are some books I’ve requested that I should be able to pick up in the next day or so.

The God Who Is There by D.A. Carson

The Great Theologians: A Brief Guide by Gerald McDermott

How to Choose a Bible Version by Robert Thomas

Instruments in the Redeemer’s Hands by Paul Tripp

The Goldsworth Trilogy by Graeme Goldsworthy (this includes Gospel and KingdomGospel and WisdomThe Gospel in Revelation)

Unpacking Forgiveness by Chris Brauns