By Matt Smethurst
On My Shelf is a new feature designed to help you get to know various people through providing a behind-the-scences glimpse into their lives as readers.
I corresponded with Kathleen Nielson, director of women’s initiatives for The Gospel Coalition, about what’s currently on her nightstand, books she re-reads, what she’s learning, and more.
What’s on your nightstand right now?
Piles of books seem to grow on all available surfaces in my study, offering categories of options for trips to the next room or to the airport. There’s a “missions” pile, since I’m preparing for a talk on women in missions. Ruth Tucker’s From Jerusalem to Irian Jaya is full of amazing missionary stories I can’t believe I’ve either forgotten or never heard. My husband and I also recently discovered a lovely series of missionary biographies published by YWAM for young people—I just read Gladys Aylward: The Adventure of a Lifetime and enjoyed hearing the well-told story of this housemaid from England who found her way by faith to China. Then there’s The Great Commission: Evangelicals and the History of World Missions, edited by Martin Klauber and Scott Manetsch.
Read more at http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/tgc/2013/07/09/on-my-shelf-life-and-books-with-kathleen-nielson/
The “On My Shelf” series is interesting, but I’ve noticed something that all the participants seem to have in common: Their reading lists are very, very serious. Either they never read anything just for fun — I’m talking about a novel by John Grisham or Michael Crichton, or anything off the “new fiction” shelf at Barnes and Noble — or they’re embarrassed to admit it.
In the last few days I’ve re-read some of my C.S. Lewis collection. I also read a re-issue of one of the original Hardy Boys books, the original versions from the 1930s. I don’t feel I have to hide that fact because someone might ridicule me for reading children’s books. It was fun. I’m hoping the next “On My Shelf” contributor might make a similar admission. Unless, of course, none of them ever does read something just for fun.