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"I Cannot Live Without Books" - Thomas Jefferson

July 10, 2017

I have to agree with old Tom. Life without books would be - dull; dark; dreary; dismal. Life without books would be black and white. We wouldn't actually die without books (sorry, Mr. Jefferson), but life would certainly be tedious and tiresome.

In a letter to his old friend and fellow Founding Father John Adams on June 10, 1815, Jefferson was sharing his heart when he spoke those words. He didn't love books because there was no Internet, TV, iPod, DVD player or video game to keep him happy. Books were as important to him as food. In fact, a fellow book lover, Erasmus, said a few centuries earlier, "When I get a little money I buy books; and if any is left I buy food and clothes."

I shudder to think where I would be today without books, particularly the Book of Books. It has been my guide and road map since I was 13 years old. In that love letter to humanity my Heavenly Father taught me to be a man; to love; to have compassion; to serve others.

But God has used many other books to impact my life. As a teenager I read four or five books a day. Often in my Junior High School classes I would read a book with one eye while I was taking notes. Books were my constant companions, even friends. I was able to escape into books when my alcoholic father became especially abusive.

Today between ministry and business I can barely read one book a week. But I treasure the time I spend with them. Yesterday when my daughter and I were on our morning walk we met some teens at their bus stop. One told us, "I hate books," and the others agreed.

I asked if they would like to travel the world. When they said they would, I told them I can go anywhere in the world without leaving home - with books. I can sit at the feet of the wisest people in the world - through books. And I can become a better, more knowledgeable and capable man; a better husband, father and pastor - all through the wonderful gift of books.

Books are the distilled wisdom and knowledge of the ages. Try them - you will learn to love them as I do.

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Dr. Tom Barrett is a pastor, teacher, author, conference keynote speaker, professor, certified executive coach, and marketplace minister. His teaching and coaching have blessed both church and business leaders. He has been ordained for over 40 years, and has pastored in seven churches over that time. Today he “pastors pastors” as he oversees ordained and licensed ministers in Florida for his ministerial fellowship.

He has written thousands of articles that have been republished in national newspapers and on hundreds of websites, and is a frequent guest on radio and television shows. His weekly Conservative Truth article (which is read by 250,000) offers a unique viewpoint on social, moral and political issues from a Biblical worldview. This has resulted in invitations to speak internationally at churches, conferences, Money Shows, universities, and on TV (including the 700 Club).

“Dr. Tom,” as his readers and followers affectionately refer to him, has a passion for teaching, as you can see from his ministry website (www.ChristianFinancialConcepts.com); his patriotic site (www.ConservativeTruth.org); and his business site (www.GoldenArtTreasures.com). Tom's friend Dr. Lance Wallnau wrote of him, "Tom Barrett is a Renaissance man with a passion for subject matter ranging from finance to theology and American history."
Visit Dr. Tom Barrett's website at www.DrTom.TV