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Book Review

Glory in the Glen by Tom Lennie; published 2009 by Christian Focus Publications; available from John Ritchie Ltd; 512 pages; price £11.99.

The sub-title states, "A History of Evangelical Revivals in Scotland 1880-1940". This extensively researched book contains relevant photographs throughout and boasts a fifteen page Bibliography plus a Places Index and a People Index.

The book presents, what Tom Lennie considers to be, God-sent revivals that occurred in Scotland between the Moody and Sankey Revival of 1873-74 and the Lewis Revival of 1949-53.

What key features were common to these evangelical awakenings? 1. A deep conviction of sin. 2. The extraordinary empowerment of the Word of God with depth of impact so that numerous lives were "radically and permanently changed".

Glory in the Glen commences in 1880-83 with an account of the early years of James McKendrick in Hamilton. "His direct words and obvious passion made strong impact on those listening". This zealous evangelist quickly developed as a preacher and witnessed a wave of revival right across the north-east of Scotland - also well-documented in this book.

In 1905-06, the mining community of Lanarkshire is brought into focus. Fiery Irish evangelist W P Nicholson observed, "When we began a mission in a town or village, we weren’t there long before we had either a riot or revival. Sometimes we had more riot than revival but never a revival without a riot". Here was a man who undoubtedly believed that the truth of the gospel needs no apology.

The author takes the reader on a tour around the country, stopping to comment on spiritual blessing experienced by a range of Christians. Caution is advisable at times and some places may only be briefly visited by the reader, but familiar names spring up, like Alexander Marshall, who preached to large Glasgow audiences in 1919-23, while, across the city in the Crosshill district, Fred Elliot saw "intense interest and power" comparable, it was suggested, to the great revivals of the nineteenth century.

Surely, we should be prompted to cry, "O Lord, revive thy work in the midst of the years…in wrath remember mercy" (Hab 3.2).

AC

Stepping Stones through the Bible day by day compiled by Ian Rees; published 2008 by Precious Seed Publications; available from John Ritchie Ltd; 384 pages; price £12.99.

Stepping Stones forms part of the highly popular Day by Day series.

This beautifully produced book is specifically designed for families and children. It comes with the additional benefit of a free CD-ROM (Windows XP or Vista) in order to access all the readings from your computer if you so wish.

In the Foreword, Ian Rees states the purpose of Stepping Stones. His expressed desire is that the reader will not only gain a greater understanding of God’s dealings with the human race but will be drawn closer to God.

With this in view, Stepping Stones sets out to show that God wants us to know: what He is like, what we are like, and how to please Him. The Compiler observes, "So it is important to read the Bible regularly, that we may begin to know God, know ourselves, and know God’s will for us". Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version.

This is a very presentable book with a flexible laminated cover complete with headbands and tailbands and is beautifully illustrated throughout with full-colour drawings by Honor Ayers. A useful ribbon marker is also included.

Stepping Stones follows the time-line of the Bible. Each day commences with a daily reading passage, then a highlighted Bible verse is followed by relevant comments and practical applications.

A "prayer bubble" contains a prayer for each day. For example, "Thank God for your parents and ask Him to continue to give them help, wisdom and love for each other".

Stepping Stones is ideal for use at breakfast or before bed-time to give vital instruction from the Bible to children on a daily basis.

AC

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