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  • Writer's pictureNate Rudquist

One Of The Greatest Gifts You Can Give: Reading

Updated: Jan 31, 2022

One of the things I'm most grateful to my parents and uncles for, reading!

One of the things I am most grateful for from my childhood was the encouragement to read from my Mom and two of my Uncles. They had a way of opening whole new worlds to me, and I was fascinated by what I found there. Over my thirty-three years, I've read more books than I can count, and I have a list a mile long of ones I haven't got to yet! Those early influences have helped me form my own opinion, that books and reading are essential to a well-rounded and continuing education.

I started out very young. Some of my earliest favorites I remember reading were the "Old Mother Westwind" stories. "Encyclopedia Brown" mysteries. The "Brains Benton Series". My Dad would read the "Freddie the Pig" books to me. "The Chronicles of Narnia" and "The Lord of the Rings" were read to me, or read by me, around age eight. "The Horse and His Boy" was my favorite from Narnia. "The Lord of the Rings" is the greatest work of fantasy fiction ever written, and will never be beaten. That's fact, not opinion! Disagree? You're wrong! Jim Kjelgaard fueled my early dreams of the wilderness, self-dependency, and joys of owning a dog. Later, I was exposed to "Redwall" and found a whole new world that I quickly fell in love with! "Watership Down" is another underrated book. I plan on doing reviews of all of these at some point, if you've never heard of them.

As I grew older, my love of history took off. Along with the fantasy and fiction, books on various time periods captured my imagination. "I was there with Cortez and Montezuma", "The Secret Service", "Pedro de Martinez", "The Texas Rangers", and "Sir Francis Drake" (all from Landmark I think?). Renowned historian Bruce Catton's books on the Civil War exposed me to so much I didn't know. He made the battles, victories, defeats, and blunders of all sides come alive from Bull Run to Antietam, all while delving into the politics and society that set up the first Civil War. "The Battered Bastards of Bastogne" by Stephen Ambrose, "The Sinking of the Bismark", and numerous other books took me into World War II. Then 9/11 happened, and I soaked up the books of events today that will be history tomorrow. Heroes like Chris Kyle, Marcus Luttrell, "The Reaper", and others showed the horrors we faced overseas. The greatest book on leadership, and Christ-like service during wartime was "Joker-One", can't recommend that enough!

I could go on with good books! I've run into a lot of bad ones as well, but those get tossed in the trash bin. I haven't been as good at reading spiritual books. That's been a fault of mine I am trying to fix. I tend to watch videos from those like Fr. Mike Schmitz or Taylor Marshall, to name a couple. I just got an introductory to the "Summa" I will be working on. If my reading has had a fault, it is not reading enough good, spiritual material.

Now to tie this into today's world. Cancel culture is here, and isn't going anywhere. The last hope of the desperate was today, March 4th, and as of 12:40pm, Trump is still not the president. This means that the masonic and communist agenda will continue full swing. There are the obvious signs of censureship going on. The Bible is under attack for "hate speech". Dr. Seuss, books I loved as a kid, are being called racist somehow. Have you ever read "Fahrenheit 451"? It' not far off from "1984". To control information, the books are burned. You don't think that will happen? It already is!

The answer? I believe every family, or those wanting to have one, should begin building their own libraries in their homes. Pick the books and series that are healthy and wholesome, and start buying one as often as you can. Good history books, before they are all re-written. Ideally, I'd love to have a community that could combine together to form their own library, but we don't have that yet. So start with your own. If you can, support your local small bookstores and if you have young kids, or want kids, go grab those Dr. Seuss books! Grandparents, go grab those so you have them for when the kids are over. If you'd rather shop online, steer clear of Amazon if you can. They are a major part of the cancel culture.

I know money is tight, but books and the gift of reading are priceless. I've learned more from reading than I ever did in school, and I had some good schooling. It also allows us to continue learning as adults, after our formal schooling is over. There are numerous health benefits to reading as well, but I won't go into those here. The main thing is stock your home with good, wholesome reading, and joyfully share that with others!

Thanks for reading, God bless, and God bless the USA!

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