Everybody possesses a library, some extensive, some selective, but each one a treasure trove of history, comedy, and wisdom. I am discriminating with my collection. You see, a library is like your life, and the books within are the friends you make.
Take a look at what lines your shelves.
Laughter is one of the greatest gifts God has given us, and we need to laugh. Henry Ward Beecher once said, “Mirth is God’s medicine. Everyone ought to bathe in it.” But I think Alan Alda pretty much said it best when he offered this advice: “When people are laughing, they’re generally not killing each other.”
We need volumes of laughter.
When we’re in need of good company, we don’t just walk into our library and pull just anything from the shelf. Only the right title will do. Some choices offer wise counsel. Some offer comfort. Some take on us wild adventures. Some help us find our inner child, cajole our hopeless romantic, or nurture precious memories.
The most special volumes cut through our exteriors and find their way to our core. They help us open up, give us courage, and inspire us to make our dreams come true.
So many books, so little time. But it’s quite the injustice to choose a book only to leave it sitting on the shelf. Books and friendships must be interactive. I like what James Bryce has to say about books–“The worth of a book is to be measured by what you can carry away from it.”
As you build your library, build carefully, build wisely. Every book comes with a price. You get what you pay for, and exteriors can be deceiving.
The greatest let down of all is to be enticed by the blurb on the back cover and then later discover the book itself is nothing like what it promises. The old axiom is true. You can’t always judge a book by its cover.
I’ll leave you with a metaphorical challenge. Read the quotes I’ve listed below, and every time you see the word book, think about your friends and friendships. You may walk away with a new lesson about life.
“If there’s a book you really want to read but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” ~ Toni Morrison
“Books let us into their souls and lay open to us the secrets of our own.” ~ William Hazlitt
“I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves. “ ~ Anna Quindlen
A book must be an ice-axe to break the seas frozen inside our soul. ~ Franz Kafka
“Books can be dangerous. The best ones should be labeled “This could change your life.” ~Helen Exley
“Books are not made for furniture, but there is nothing else that so beautifully furnishes a house.” ~ Henry Ward Beecher
[Books are] “medicine for the soul.” ~ Inscription over the door of the Library at Thebes
“Good as it is to inherit a library, it is better to collect one.” ~ Augustine Birrell
“A house without books is like a room without windows.” ~ Heinrich Mann
“Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body.” ~ Richard Steele
And what true friendship is to the heart.
What do you think? Lend a part of yourself to my library. Please leave a comment. I always enjoy hearing from you.