Over the winter months we take a regular bookstall to the Pennine Bible Witness which is held once a month locally. Last night was one of these events. Chris Hand (from Crich Baptist Church) was preaching. In his sermon he quoted from a book that we have probably sold less than a handful of since its publication in 2003. His quote has made me pick it up for a better look at, and I'm not sure why we haven't sold more. Certainly if you are planning to head to Cornwall this summer I would recommend the book as 'background reading'. It examines the Cornish evangelical revival of the 1700's in the light of its central figure, Samuel Walker. He was evidently a strong character but a gracious and humble man too. The book is interesting for its historical content but also has much to profit us through the quotes from Samuel Walker's journals and letters. This is one such quote from one of his letters...
'Secret prayer is the one great thing in experimental religion, the mainspring (if I may so say) which if not kept in order, the whole movement of vital, heart religion must grow faint and lanquid. On the contrary, shut me in a dungeon, or fix me on a mountain, let me see neither men nor books (if such a situation was my lot, not my choice), provided my heart were enlarged to call upon the Lord, I should be no loser. On the other, if I spent every day in reading the best books, in hearing the best preachers, in conversing with the best men, if secret prayer was not carefully kept up, and every other means watered and improved by this, my soul would starve in the midst of plenty. Union and communion with Jesus is the greatest mercy on this side of eternity, and that perfected is the heaven of heavens.'
A Cornish Revival, The Life and Times of Samuel Walker of Truro - by Tim Shenton (£16.95)