Monday, 31 December 2007

What Did You Last Read in 2007?

I am gasping for breath, straining to reach the sounds like Eric Liddell's Olympic Gold Medal winning 400m race, but instead it's just me trying to finish this fine book before the year is out!
My chosen Christmas reading would not appeal to anyone who has an aversion to athletics, but for me it has been gripping. The author is clearly an authority on Liddell (had an advisory input into the 'Chariots of Fire' movie) and has himself competed at a relatively advanced level. As a Presbyterian minister he very interestingly handles the question of whether sport can have a place in a Christian's life. The other issue which Liddell's case always raises is regarding the use of the Lord's day. These two matters in themselves are more than enough to handle on a full stomach, surrounded by the noise and debris of this time of year! But the book is otherwise a fairly easy read and has a number of photos in it, so £8.95 is a fair price. It has been adroitly brought out by Evangelical Press on the eve of Olympic year. I hope many people involved in sport will read it and be inspired like Eric Liddell to be first and foremost devoted to the Lord. A good resolution for the New Year.

Thursday, 20 December 2007


We are just starting to breathe more easily again - less of the dashing up and down stairs between the packing room and office and more of the sitting and eating mince-pies! Our last batch of parcels for a Christmas delivery went off with the courier this afternoon. For any late mail-orderers your only chance now of a Christmas delivery is Royal Mail Special Delivery. For our local customers, we will happily serve you in the shop up until midday on Christmas Eve. We then intend to shut down operations until the New Year. We're hoping to catch up on some reading (in between calming the boys down from all the excitement usually associated with the season). So watch this space - we might find some time for a few posts even while the shop is shut.

Thursday, 13 December 2007

Read and Meditate

I'm really pleased that Banner of Truth have produced this book. Not all that they do now is of the quality of earlier days, but this book was a reprint project well worth doing. It is commended in the preface by the Bishop of Durham no less - when that position was held by Handley Moule. 'The Loveliness of Christ' is an apt title for extracts from the letters of Samuel Rutherford. It is diary sized, feels like nubuck (but officially softcover), costs £10 and would be ideal for reading on a train or bus journey. Read and meditate, read further and meditate further, and keep repeating the process - that's the way to go with this book. It feels good to the hand, and its contents are good food for the soul. It is so full of Christ, and he is the pearl of great price to be sought for, in contrast to the frantic consumerism of the Christmas period.
If you want to go further, you could upgrade to the classic collection of Rutherford's letters for an extra £8.50. But this is vastly greater in size, in a large hardback volume edited by Andrew Bonar and also reproduced by Banner last year.

Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Send It Gift Wrapped

For those of you who (like me) don't start Christmas shopping until the week before Christmas you may find our gift wrapping service a great solution. It is free! (and you don't get many free things in life) and we are quite happy to send to an address of your choice. Just don't forget the last inland posting dates (for Royal Mail) - second class is Monday 17th, first class is Thursday 20th and Special Delivery can be used right up to Saturday 22nd.
p.s. Don't worry, the gift wrapping isn't normally ripped open as on the photo -that's just a before and after shot!

Monday, 10 December 2007

In My Kitchen

What a nice surprise to receive a poem like this in the post (along with an invoice!) It certainly gave me a welcome minute or two of 'time-out' during a busy day in the shop.

When I am in my kitchen, I know the Lord is near,
I may be doing washing, or sitting in my chair,
Or maybe I am cooking, to make a dainty dish,
I ask His blessing on it, He kindly grants my wish.

As I take up my iron, to straighten out a crease,
He straightens out my problems, and gives me perfect peace.
Like when I put my clothes on, to cover up my skin,
His righteous robe He gives me, and takes away my sin.

For righteousness imputed, is what He wrought for me,
A life lived as my proxy, my substitute to be;
Not only by His living, but died upon the tree,
Bearing my sin, He suffered, then rose to set me free.

Sometimes he pays a visit, which is so real to me,
I could reach out to touch Him, though nothing I can see,
But He has touched my spirit, and set my soul on fire,
Renewing love within me, He meets my soul's desire.

His love passes all knowledge, an ocean all divine,
Which always is surrounding the isle of life that's mine,
And as I bathe within it, there is no shore or beach,
Its length, and breadth, and deepness, is far beyond my reach.

He said, I will be with you, to cheer you on your way,
That you may know my presence, throughout each passing day,
So, sitting in my kitchen, although I'm on my own,
I cannot be down-hearted, or feeling I'm alone.

So if you find my body, still sitting in my chair,
Don't grieve because you're finding my real me not there,
He's paid me His last visit; He'll visit me no more,
For I will visit His home, to worship and adore.

Then will be no more sorrow, no tears to wipe away,
No sin to cause me problem, no food to cook each day,
No clothes in need of washing, but clothed in garments white,
I'll see Him, and be like Him - And there, will be no night.

Written by an elderly gentleman who self-published books full of articles, anecdotes, pictures and poetry like this one. Titles include:
-Countryman's Heritage
-One Man's Furrow
-From Ploughboy to Pastor
by David Obbard, £4 each and we have them all in stock


Thursday, 6 December 2007

That Warm Winter Feeling

I've titled this shot 'The pedestrian's view (with blurred vision)'. It was taken on leaving the bookshop this evening. Dark nights, lighted windows and warm looking interiors filled with attractive goods just remind me of childhood Christmases. A touch of nostalgia overwhelms me... it must be age. Lorna has curtly reminded me that it is still only 6th December and although she has given way over trimming up the shop window it won't be taking place at home for some time yet! Basically the message is, there's a lot of work to be done between now and that unmentionable holiday season, and a lot of customers to serve.

Monday, 3 December 2007


Only £1
For less money than an advent calendar you can have from us something vastly more profitable. It is a only a booklet but it will easily see you through the advent season. It is simply titled 'Immanuel', being an extract from Archbishop Ussher in the Apples of Gold Series of reprints. Its contents are highly distilled, as you would expect from a Puritan writer. So just take it steadily with frequent meditation (on the scriptures referred to I need hardly add.) You will be delivered from Christmas sentimentality, and settled upon biblical foundations, and may sense again the mystery and the joy of the incarnation of the Son of God.