What Are You Reading? Rev. David Freeman

I’m David Freeman, a native of Little Rock with deep Arkansas roots on both sides of my family.

I’ve been the Senior Pastor of First United Methodist Church of Little Rock since 2015 but it’s also the church I grew up attending. In fact, as a child, I started visiting the downtown branch of CALS when it was located directly behind our church building.

My wife, Katie Woodruff Freeman, is a therapist and we have two young daughters.

What are you currently reading?

I recently finished Michelle Obama’s autobiography, Becoming. It is a beautifully written story of a beautiful life. I loved the novel A Man Called Ove and I recommend the audio version because it’s read by Little Rock’s own George Newbern. I’m in the middle of Shameless: A case for not feeling bad about feeling good (about sex), by Nadia Bolz-Weber. Bolz-Weber is trying to unpack some of the damage Christianity has done to sex and body image through the centuries. A book I have on my list is Spoken into Being: Divine Encounters through Story by Michael E. Williams.

What book do you keep coming back to?

Every year on the Dr. King Holiday weekend, I try to read his book or essay, The Measure of a Man. It reminds me that all that Dr. King did was driven by his faith. I’m also a big fan of Brené Brown and I’ve read her book The Gifts of Imperfection several times.

What children’s book do you wish every young person could read?

There are so many great children’s books but the genre for older kids and young adults is having a golden age. I think The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas should be required reading in every middle school in America. I also loved Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz.

What role has reading played in your life?

I was late to the love of reading. Reading was very difficult for me as a child from what I think was an undiagnosed learning disability. Through college and even graduate school, I only read what was required. But around the age of 30 it clicked. For some reason, reading on an e-reader was much easier for me and I began to gobble up books. As someone who has to write a lot for my work, I’ve discovered that in order to craft beautiful words, I must be filled with them. Even if I’m reading something that has nothing to do with my work, it is still good fuel for my creativity and thought process.