In Romans 12 Paul says to "present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind…." The renewal of the mind is hard work, bodily work. Reading, thinking, writing – disciplines such as these are labor-intensive. It's no wonder so many grad students walk around as if emaciated. They've been at work, some of the hardest kind.
This week I came across the following article from Denis Haack about his "regimen" in order to read through (work through?) John Calvin's Institutes of the Christian Religion. I encourage you to take some time to read what Denis recounts. Perhaps in this, Calvin's 500th year, you might begin to further renew your mind by getting to know this father of the faith.
A Guided Walk through The Institutes
By: Denis Haack
"Last year a friend heard that I was re-reading John Calvin’s Institutes, and wondered why I would take the time. He said it was a “very confusing” book.
I had never heard that criticism of the Institutes before. The main complaint I’ve heard is that it’s too long. It is long, I grant you that; my copy tops out at 1800 pages. But if I can press the point a little, who says that’s too long? I want to be careful here, but could it be that just maybe your attention span is too short? A lot of good books are long: think of The Brothers K by David James Duncan. True, The Brothers K is a novel. And true, most people have limited time for reading, which means few choose to fill those moments with books of serious theology. But all that says more about readers and their expectations and priorities than about whether Calvin’s Institutes are too long. Long isn’t bad; never having time for serious reading is."
Read the rest of Denis' article here.