Archive for the ‘Books’ Category

Reach out to the Living – While it is Day

November 9, 2019

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The recent funeral of a well-known radio and television presenter here in Ireland brought to mind thoughts of being faithful to people while they are still alive. I recall sending something (a tract and a letter I believe) to this person many years ago. When we are faithful witnesses to people, this is something which we will never regret, even if there is either no response or a negative response from the person in question. The Lord loved and died for all and who knows how He will use the little morsels we scatter to His glory? The following is a short modified extract from my book “Singing on the Journey Home….”
I recall years ago befriending a lady whose mother was very ill. One day, towards the end of her mother’s life, I called to see my friend but prior to this I had been praying much for her mother and my desire was to speak with her. After a few moments, in answer to my prayer, she took me upstairs to see her. She was not really old by today’s standards; around seventy I think. The atmosphere was a little strained, but when I look back on that day, I know for sure that the Lord was with me and that He did speak to that lady. I was also sure that she had met another Christian at some time, and that she knew something of the scriptures for she finished some verses of the Bible that I had started to quote. I can recall a certain special moment during this exchange when there was complete silence and the lady looked at me perceptively. It was one of those looks that I shall never forget. I wanted to be gentle, to be led of the Lord, in all that I said to her – yet I felt so inadequate for the task. Still I felt that the Lord was opening her heart, speaking to her in that still small voice – the only voice that can truly penetrate the hearts of men and women.
It was the memory of the journey home from that visit that I shall never forget. I had felt emotional on leaving that home and as I drove away I felt the presence of God very strongly. Then, just as I was about half way home, that presence intensified, so much so that I almost had to stop the car. I tried not to let the tears blind me as I drove along. For the remainder of that day I went about my household duties, continuing to feel the Lord’s strong and loving reassurance in my heart.
A short time later that lady passed away and I went to the graveside as a mark of respect. It was a big funeral. Everyone seemed to know each other but I knew no one there, with the exception of my friend and a couple of others. I shook hands with my friend, who was naturally distraught and then I withdrew a distance from the many people who thronged the graveside. Somehow I was feeling very much a stranger in the midst of it all, particularly with the proceedings that followed.
The ceremony was very elaborate – if it was possible for a ceremony to get someone into heaven, then that one certainly would have. I watched as the young Roman Catholic Priest who was conducting the proceedings suddenly broke into song, in Latin. He sang with all his might and then uttered such eloquent prayers for the deceased. The coffin was one of the best that money could buy, as was the headstone. The intentions and the prayers were sincere but I knew that none of this could make any difference to the most important issue of all – the eternal destination of the deceased.
Walking away from that scene, I realised that I could never know for sure in this life whether this lady had trusted the Lord, but He knew and now it remained for me to pray for my friend and her family, that they too would find the loving Saviour who is our only real comfort in grief and loss. I also knew that the Lord had not brought me into contact with this family for nothing and that His Word, which I had quoted to a dying soul, would not “return unto Him void.”
How lovely it is to tell others of the Saviour who has come “to seek and to save that which was lost.” Like the dying thief on the cross who was only a short time from eternity, they too may find the Saviour before they leave this scene of time. My prayer for the elderly souls that I have felt led to visit (and the younger souls that I have felt led to speak to) is that the light of the Saviour would penetrate the souls of those in their twilight years – and the souls of the younger too, who could also be standing by ‘the very cliff edge of eternity.’ Surely He is but a prayer away… and even though we may be in perfect health, are we not all “dying and perishing” spiritually before we are touched by the Saviour?

 

Easter Book Launch of Novel: “Ricky the Runaway”

March 19, 2015

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Lord willing I hope to launch my fourth book “Ricky the Runaway,” which centres on the adventures of a twelve-year-old boy who runs away from home because of a well-known problem in our society: bullying at school.  The introduction to the novel reads…

“Set in the early twenty-first century, this is a story of how fervent prayer can create the winds of change in lives, blowing them safely to rest in that harbour which is faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Each short chapter leaves the reader in suspense as the story moves from one situation to another, exposing many problems which are well known in our world: bullying, the exploitation of migrant workers, parents who are not listening to their children and children who have become a danger to society because of neglect and lack of love, guidance and discipline.

Ricky runs from one danger to another, revealing how ‘running away’ from situations at home, work or school is rarely the answer to our pressing problems. Meanwhile, not one person in his family is left untouched by the power of prayer in the lives of ageing distant grandparents who have become estranged from the family. Even anonymous souls, like a nurse in a hospital corridor, are affected by what is happening in the lives of the family. Written against an Easter background, “Ricky the Runaway” is about finding “that which was lost” and discovering love, forgiveness and lives made new by the Lord Jesus Christ.”

The venue for the launch, which will take place between 3.15pm and around 5.15pm on Monday 30th March, will be Richhill Recreation Centre, in the large committee room. (Disabled access) Parents, children and all interested parties are welcome to drop in anytime (and for as long as they wish) between those hours. Simultaneously I hope to have an Easter bookmark-making craft for anyone interested. (All materials free) Light refreshments are available for all – as well as small Easter eggs for the children while stocks last!

Normally retailing at £6.99, the book will be on special offer of £5 at the launch.

The dedication reads:

“This novel is dedicated to the memory of my beloved parents, Jack Hutchinson (1926-2011) and Ella Hutchinson (1929-2014) of Woodview, near Armagh in Northern Ireland. As parents and grandparents in a million, their gifts of love and encouragement to me are still so real, reaching even beyond the bounds of this life. I feel in my heart that they would have been overjoyed with the knowledge that young people, for whom they had a special affinity, would have been reached in this special way with the love of their Master.”

Acknowledgment: I wish to thank my daughter, Sarah, for her wonderful artwork on the covers of “Ricky the Runaway.”

May the Lord bless the proceedings on Monday 30th March next. I look forward very much, to meeting old friends – and greeting new ones!

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God Made You, God Loves You, God Saves You

February 4, 2010

“God Made You, God Loves You, God Saves You” ISBN: 978-0-9557155-2-5 Published 2010

Retail Price: £6.99 (Sterling) €7.99 (Euro)

“This full-colour children’s gift book has been produced for a wide age range. The lovely contemporary photographs of creation will especially appeal to the very young, while subsequent pages will speak to all who have reached that age of understanding. Covering creation, the fall of mankind and the flood, it then touches on some Old Testament characters, who in faith looked for the coming of the Messiah. The death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ are comprehensively dealt with, while His invitation: “him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out” (John 6v37), is extended to each reader in a personal way. May readers of all ages be touched by its timeless message!”

One day my daughter came home to say that she was in a shop when she heard a tiny boy singing…

Good News! Good News! Christ died for me. Good News, Good News, if I believe…”

Everyone in the shop stopped to stare – and listen. In the summer of 2009 many other children and their stories crossed my path and one day the Lord spoke to me: “Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 19v14). It was then that I knew what He would have me do, with the result that my first children’s book was born! This Children’s Bible study takes us on a journey from Genesis to Revelation. It features full colour photographs of creation, Irish and international scenery, in addition to photographs, illustrations and object lessons which give the ambience of Bible times. My desire is that the Lord would use this little book, wherever it may travel and to the hearts of all who read, for in the words of Jesus… “Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein.” (Luke 18v17)

Singing on the Journey Home

February 4, 2010

“Singing on the Journey Home – True Stories with Favourite Hymns & Photographs”

ISBN: 978-0-9557155-1-8 Published 2008 Retail Price: £7.50 (Sterling) or €8.50 (Euro)

“On the beautiful evening of Monday, 28th August 1978, a spiritual battle raged within me. I thank God that His power prevailed and that He assisted me to take that life-changing step from darkness into His marvellous light, through faith in the shed blood of His Son Jesus Christ. Now thirty years later, I feel led of Him to write thirty little chapters from my life; each one praising Him for His love and mercy to me. Linked to these stories are lovely old hymns which have touched my heart over the years, in addition to many colour photographs of Irish and international locations. My prayer is that those who love the Lord will be blessed and encouraged; while others will find my Saviour, whose shed blood on their behalf has inspired men and women to write verse and music to His glory throughout the ages.”

The above is based on early childhood memories of my parents ‘singing on our journeys home’ and was written to commemorate 30 years since the evening I trusted the Lord Jesus Christ as Saviour. For each year I have written a little story from my life’s experiences, while linked with these stories are appropriate favourite hymns and colour photographs from Ireland; a few reflecting international travel over my years. Wherever possible I have researched the background to the old hymns quoted – material in itself which makes interesting reading. Although a few of the hymns are obscure and little is known about their authors, I felt that I must include them because their words have touched me at certain stages on my life’s journey. The book includes early childhood memories and life before coming to know the Lord; events which led to my salvation; and then many little experiences which occurred during my life of faith. Some of these are more dramatic than others, but they all have one common theme… with God all things are possible!

A Biblical Journey through the Irish Year

February 4, 2010

“A Biblical Journey through the Irish Year, with True Stories, Reflections & Photographs”

ISBN: 978-0-9557155-0-1 Published 2007 Retail Price: £6.99 (Sterling) or €7.99(Euro)

“What does the Bible have to say about ‘Lent,’ the Trinity, forgiveness, depression, illness, affluence, education, the occult, Heaven, Hell, death, prayer… the need for salvation?  These true experiences, woven into the Irish/British seasons, but internationally relevant, are told in twenty-four simple chapters and show us that the infallible Word of God is a faithful Guidebook for every issue that affects us in life.”

The above is a full colour autobiographical/devotional taking the reader on a journey through the seasons of the year. There are twenty-four chapters in all, each one containing a true story. At the close of each chapter is a full colour photograph of a scene or object lesson, based on the story told. Also included are two original paintings by my mother and daughter.