I love stories.
Since I have been young, stories have been the most influential things in my life that helped inspire, teach, and empower me to want to be a hero in my own life.
Even as a kid who was bouncing off the walls unable to focus on school with severe ADHD, as soon as my mom would begin reading a story out loud to my mind would suddenly be fixated, engaged, and open.
Having stories be such a powerful influence in my life I eventually pursued a life telling them.
So I wanted to share with you a few of the books/stories that inspired me most as a boy and young man. The stories that inspired me to be a hero in my own life.
1. God’s Smuggler by Brother Andrew: This biography details the journey to redemption and eventual adventures of Brother Andrew, a missionary who affected the entire world with good news, smuggling the Bible into nations around the world. The book is thrilling and inspiring, and gave me a vision for how exciting a life after God can be.
2. Kingdom Tales Trilogy by David R. Mains and Karen Burton Mains: These engaging collection of stories are imaginative and poignant modern fairy tales, that serve as as parables and allegories that convey deeper and beautiful truths while engaging the readers in enthralling and magical short stories that take place in the same beautiful world.
3. The Redwall Series by Brian Jaques: These stories take place in a world where heroic animals fight for good against evil in the fashion of classic tales full of swords, armor, castles and adventure. I would listen to epic orchestral music every afternoon in my teens creating the world in my mind and all apart of the influence that made me want to become a hero!
4. Roxaboxen by Alice McLerran (Author), Barbara Cooney (Illustrator): This is a picture book that seemed to fully encapsulate my youthful zeal for life. It mirrored my boyhood imagination telling a story through beautiful illustrations of a group of children creating entire worlds with each other with nothing more than their imagination. Which encouraged me to use and build my God-given imagination more fully and freely.
5. The Children’s Story Bible by Catherine Vos: I can still remember laying on the floor every day as a young boy as my mom would read me this book and suddenly having the stories of the bible come to life in my mind in a real and visceral way. This book is a novelized story of the bible, detailing the kings, queens, adventures, and lessons found in the Word of God. To this day much of my knowledge of the stories and figures from the bible is routed in the stories I heard as a young boy ingesting the greatest stories ever told.
These are a few of the stories that most shaped me as a young man, and ended up having a lasting impact on my life. Because of these stories, I found the desire to be a hero, to do the right thing, the beauty of imaginations, and a love for God.
Check them out!
If you are interested more in my story, recently my mom and I wrote a memoir-esque book detailing my coming of age story and what it was like growing up the Different kid and how God uses our differences in the beautiful story He has for us to tell.
Check it out here!