Friday, 30 March 2007

Latest books

We have had quite a few new books in recently which we haven't yet had time to add to the website. Please ring if you want any further information:
Daily Remembrancer - James Smith - £15
Same Lake, Different Boat - S O Hubach - £8.95
Can We Be Good Without God? - J Blanchard - £1.50
Little Pillows & Morning Bells - F R Havergal - £9.95
The Sherwood Gypsy - Unknown Author - £2.75
Salvation Freely Given - H B Bulteel - £2.20
Sprouting of God's Seed - A Tuinman - £2.95
Face to Face with David (vol 2) - M Bentley - £5.00
Travel with William Cowper - P Williams - £10.00
Truth, Lies and Science Education - P Taylor - £7.00
365 Days with Wilberforce - W Wilberforce - £12.00
Exploring the Bible, Habakkuk - T Shenton - £6.00
How to Run Children's Clubs and Meetings - S Walker - £7.00
People in the Passion of Jesus - R Ellsworth - £5.00
Holy God, Holy People - H D Morgan - £7.95
Pages from Church History - S J Nichols - £7.95
On Fire for God - V Bugden - £11.95
The Evangelical Doctor - D C Wood - £12.95

Window Shopping

A themed window at the shop...

Thursday, 29 March 2007

Amazing Grace

It's the best film I've seen all year - but then again it's the only one. Wilberforce was rather more dashing than real life portraits suggest, and there was a hint of Bob Geldof about his dishevelled looks at times. Was this a deliberate ploy to link the two at a subliminal level? But they are poles apart in the motivations that drive them, although Wilber's evangelical Christianity is not given emphasis by this film. Sadly, John Newton is also poorly portrayed. This is best redressed by reading his 'Letters' (Banner of Truth paperback edition available, hardback due April) or better still, the original 'Cardiphonia' or 'Utterance of the Heart' as it is now rendered in the Gospel Mission edition.
The lesson is simple - see the film, and then read the books. You won't regret it.

Birthday Treat

It was my birthday yesterday. Don't ask how old. When I told Matt he kindly commented 'that's old' with GREAT emphasis! We had a customer in looking at Wilberforce books and it got us going on the Wilberforce theme -one thing led to another and we decided to go and see the film 'Amazing Grace' (a sort of 'birthday treat'!). For those of you that don't know, 'Amazing Grace' tells the story of William Wilberforce and his battle with the British establishment in bringing about the abolition of the slave trade. It has certainly given me further appetite for reading about both Wilberforce and also John Newton. Wilberforce was influenced by the ministry of John Newton and was supported by him in his fight against slavery. I will be taking a copy of 'Out of the Depths' (the autobiography of John Newton) home. I'll let you know how I get on with it...
p.s. yes the film was worth seeing -birthday or no birthday!

Thursday, 22 March 2007


As 25th March approaches, the 200th Anniversary of the passing of the Bill to abolish the Slave Trade will be observed in various ways. Christian publishers have certainly not forgotten it. Here is a listing, by no means comprehensive, of the books we have on Wilberforce:-

Day One have weighed in with another in the 'Travel with...' Series. Rather confusingly they have another of a similar name for children in their large format 'Footsteps of the Past' Series. For devotees there is a '365 Days with...', and most recently, a new study by John Pollock - 'Abolition!'

Kingsway have republished the classic Pollock biography 'Wilberforce'.

Christian Focus have had 'William Wilberforce - Vital Christianity' by Murray Pura out for some time. They have also added 'The Freedom Fighter' by Derick Bingham to their 'Trailblazers' Series for children, as well as an interesting book on the slave trade itself called 'Voices Against Slavery' also aimed at young people.

One other book - only just out in time from Crossway - is 'Amazing Grace in the Life of William Wilberforce' by John Piper. This follows a theme not lost on other writers, of the relationship between old John Newton and Wilberforce, especially in the way that Newton encouraged him to believe that just because he had been converted didn't mean that Wilberforce should think that his career in politics was over.
You really are spoilt for choice now!

Friday, 16 March 2007

Mother's Day

Well, I may be overseas, but I am still closely involved in the life of the shop. Technology helps of course. For example, it is through this blog I have discovered that Jeremy is thinking about Mother's Day! (Matt our 3yr old also let out a secret when chatting on the webcam yesterday 'Mummy, we've got you a present....'). Actually, I would like to read 'More Love to Thee', or even better 'Stepping Heavenward' which is the book by Elisabeth Prentiss telling of her journey through many trials.
One book I have read recently that I found very thought provoking was 'Damsels in Distress'. Without wanting to be offensive to our overseas customers it was very 'American', however, if this can be overlooked I thought it a worthwhile book for women. The first chapter talks of the dangers of idle gossip
. Other topics cover legalism and PMT. The author has also written a book called 'The Excellent Wife' which has a lot of good points. Interestingly, we have a book 'The Exemplary Husband' which is intended to be used alongside 'The Excellent Wife' and we sell alot more copies of the Husband book than the Wife book. Do we women think we already know it all???
Other suitable Mother's Day books could include 'Legacy of Faith' by L Brownback, 'God's Little Women in the Bible' by B Edwards, 'Selina Countess of Huntingdon' by F, well there are lots of options, you really need to have a browse round the website/shop.

Wednesday, 14 March 2007

Mother's Day Conundrum

You have braved the decision of getting your mother (or wife via the children) a book for this Sunday, but now the real difficulty presents itself. What do you choose? A wrong move here and all your good intentions will be wasted. Will a book on parenting rebound on you - literally in severe cases. Are 'women of faith' books patronising or stimulating? Are women going to like a book just because it has a stylish cover with a flower on and deals with 'soft' issues, seen as female-orientated? The questions arise more easily than the answers. Well, on perhaps the one day in the year when she is made to feel valued, a woman is entitled to expect a thoughtful choice, where you put yourself in her position and say 'Would I want this?'
An opening suggestion is to go for a biography. How about 'Elizabeth Prentiss: More Love to Thee' by Sharon James ? But don't get it from them when you could get it from us. One thing, you certainly can't be accused of going down the stylish cover route with this!
Any more ideas, please comment.

Monday, 12 March 2007


Strangely, after writing about a customer's experience of bereavement, we have had to go through this experience ourselves. Next time she pops in, she will learn how timely her words were.
We often have customers asking for books to give to children about death. I have searched for a book I am happy with on this subject without much success. I am now in the position of the customer and would like something suitable for our children. Any ideas?
Because of the need to attend a funeral abroad I have spent many hours sitting in Durham passport office. I picked up 'Keep a Quiet Heart' (see Jeremy's post) to take. During the frustrating delays it was helpful in reminding me that our Lord is in control of all things. 'A quiet heart is content with what God gives'.

Wednesday, 7 March 2007

Customers who minister to us

Most customers we enjoy serving, some are more tricky, and some serve us! The latter are the ones I enjoy chatting to the most. They love to talk of the best things, the God they love. Often without realising it, they give us much food for thought. They leave the shop or put down the phone without realising that they have encouarged us to continue in our ministry with renewed enthusiasm. They have very simply shown us why we do what we do.
We have one particular gem of a customer. Naturally speaking she lives a lonely life, but she has her Bible and her Christian books, plus she is a great letter writer. It is through this that she enjoys Christian fellowship with a wide range of people. She visited the shop yesterday. Having lost her husband a few years ago she has also recently been bereaved of her son at a young age. She talked openly about her renewed struggle to understand the sovereignty of God. She mentioned a particular TBS greeting card that she purchased from our shop which she has found very helpful during this difficult period in her life. She wanted more so that she could send it to her many correspondents - both Christian and non-Christian. She wants them to understand who she turns to for her daily strength.
It is wonderful to hear when customers have found profit from the books/cards they buy from us.
BTW, we stock the full range of TBS cards and Bibles. Check them out on their website -

Monday, 5 March 2007

Weekend Reading

The book I picked up for my weekend was 'Give Me This Mountain' by Helen Roseveare. It turned out to be one of those books which keeps you reading into the small hours. It is the story of Dr Roseveare's mssionary years in the Belgian Congo. Actually much of the book is about her conversion and spiritual journey leading up to her going to the Congo. I appreciated her honesty of her own personality failings and the spiritual difficulties these led her into. She has much to teach about walking out a Christian life, particularly in the midst of the suffering and terror which she describes so matter-of-factly during the Simba rebellion of the 1960's. Her epilogue gives these three points as the main lessons she learnt through her trials:

1. Participation in His suffering is necessary to each one if we are to fulfil His will in this world.

2. The pre-eminence of His Son is essential that we may know in very truth His all-sufficiency at all times.

3. Praise through His sacrifice is possible even in the midst of danger and horror, as we rejoice in His working out His purposes.

I have just started reading her next book 'He gave us a Valley' -it could be another late night...!


By the way, another fascinating missionary story also about the Belgian Congo is 'Missing, Believed Killed' by Margaret Hayes. She was a nurse who was captured during the Simba rebellion and miraculously escaped death during the massacre of her colleagues. I wonder if she knew Dr Roseveare?
...yes, you can buy all these books from us!

Saturday, 3 March 2007


Site of the day for historians, on the occasion of the 50th Anniversary Services of the building of the new chapel at The Headlands The book referred to can be obtained direct from the deacon, or else from us.

Friday, 2 March 2007

Time Management

Friday night. I emerged from a mad day in the shop gripping this book determined that if I can't control the pace at least I can learn how to be reconciled to it. It's no testimony if you flog yourself doing Christian work, then go home and flog the kids (metaphorically speaking!) Elisabeth Elliot has a lot of wise words to impart in this compilation of her articles, but what caught my eye was this:
'I think I find most help in trying to look on all the interruptions and hindrances to work that one has planned out for oneself as discipline, trials sent by God to help one against getting selfish over one's work.'
That's a healthy perspective! It's actually a quote from Annie Keary (1825-1879). I wonder who she was?