My summer reading stretches me in several directions: course development, professional development, Revitalization Center work, and when I can squeeze it in, fun!
This summer the Revitalization Center is running a consultation in my long time home, Kenya, on renewal movements in East Africa. Toward that end I am reading Agbo Kalu, African Pentecostalism: An Introduction (Oxford, 2008) and Agbonkhianmeghe Orobator, Theology Brewed in an African Pot (Orbis, 2008. Andrew Walls once stated, “if you want to know something about Christianity, you must know something about Africa.” I regard these two works as important treatments of African Christianity.
Next year the Center will examine movements in northern India and Nepal. Simon Samuel, Principal of New Theological College in Dehra Dun, our host institution, has recommended two novels about Asia and/or India as good introductions to life in India today. I’ll read one of those, Aravind Adiga’s The White Tiger (Free Press, 2008) this summer. I completed the other, Arundhati Roy’s The God of Small Things (Random House, 1997) last spring.
This fall I am teaching Acts of the Apostles for the first time in an Inductive Biblical Studies format. So the Book of Acts itself has occupied much of my close reading attention for some months now. As far as secondary literature on Acts, pride of place has gone to a rereading of C. Kavin Rowe’s superb World Upside Down: Reading Acts in the Graeco-Roman Age (Oxford, 2010). I’ll also work my way through Power from on High: The Spirit in Israel’s Restoration and Witness in Luke-Acts (Sheffield, 2000) by Max Turner.
I’ll also finish up a couple of academic works including Matthew W. Bates, The Hermeneutics of the Apostolic Proclamation: The Center of Paul’s Method of Scriptural Interpretation (Baylor, 2012). Last but not least, as part of my process of unwinding at the end of the spring semester, I quickly read Rick Atkinson’s The Guns at Last Light: The War in Western Europe, 1944-1945 (Henry Holt, 2013). My interest lies in how people endured the uncertainties and horror of that war, and how the contours of its outcome produced the world we live in today.