A Trip to Booksale: Finding Christian books at a Second Hand/Used Bookstore

21 05 2010

Want to do something that will flex you Christian life? Read a Christian book! But you don’t have a budget to buy those books at National or PCBS. Go to Booksale!

Booksale is a popular second hand or used bookstore in the Philippines from a company called Visual Mix Inc. It’s a sort of ukay-ukay for books. They sell those books (from novels, children’s, coffee tables, comics etc.) in a very cheap price. It also carries new and back issues of magazines, local and international. You can find it at malls as stalls or a store branch. Sometimes it has Christian books that are classics and written by famous authors.

For years now, I’ve brought books at Booksale. Some had impact my life. You don’t have to pay expensive Christian books just to fuel your Christian walk. You can find some treasures at Booksale.

This article intends to give advice and tips on finding a Christian book if you ever be or planning to go to Booksale.

For first timers: Prepare for a lot digging, flipping and bending for books at Booksale. But your effort will be paid off if you get hard to find or classic books in a very affordable price. It might surprise you that big stores sell that same book for a hefty price but find it at Booksale very cheap.

You might as well be informed that this is not a Christian bookstore. Booksales carries men’s magazines and other stuff Christians should not set eyes upon.

Another don’t expect for the sales clerk to know or find a book for you. They are not like those from big bookstores.

The budget: Booksale gives prices as low as P10. The price ranges to P10-75 and over 100 which are still cheap compare with popular bookstores. If you’re going there, it’s safe to have P50-100. If you’re lucky, with that amount you can buy 3-5 books. If the book is prolific in Booksale, you might as well wait for them to lower its price. I’ve observed that if a book wouldn’t sell, they will change the price. You might notice the multiple price stickers on the book. I brought books which are classic for as low as 10-25 pesos. They don’t price it because of the authors, but to sell and dispose it.

Some publishers you might look out while digging: This list will give some ease and save some time on what is a Christian book by looking at the publisher’s name. Some publishers are Whitaker, Tyndale, NavsPress, Revell, McMillan, Moody Press, Regal, Bethany House, Spire, New Leaf, CLC (Christian Literature Crusade), Thomas Nelson, Zondervan, Inter Varsity Press. These are legitimate Christian publishing company, but that doesn’t mean we should put off our discernment radar. Let’s use our Christian discernment by comparing those books with our stand in doctrine, morality, biblical worldview etc. Also I would recommend old stuff (50’s -70’s) from them which, I think still have biblical integrity rather that the new one (driven to just make money).

It will also help if you find a book or author to check them in the internet before buying it. You can search info, reviews, criticism and recommendations for that book and the author. Ask someone like a pastor or a fellow Christian if he knows something about the book you like to get.

Authors you shouldn’t miss: Booksale sometimes has great books by these authors: Chuck Swindoll, Josh McDowell, E.M. Bounds, Andrew Murray, Corrie Ten Boom, Charles Spurgeon, and C.S. Lewis. Some of these authors are available in thin pocketsize books. I spot Left Behind series, In His Steps and Lee Strobel’s A Case For Easter more recently. The list I provide are some that are prolific in Booksale (which I have seen in BS over the years) but not necessary always available.

Of course, there are Bibles in different versions and sizes you can find in Booksale. You can own the greatest book in the world for a very affordable price.

Topics or Category you may find: Mostly Christian living, devotional and discipleship.

Rarely are apologetics and theology.

Great titles that influence me: Here are some books I brought that greatly helped me in my Christian walk that I got from Booksale (and I hope you can find it too.)

  1. More Than A Carpenter by Josh McDowell
  2. Spiritual Maturity by J. Oswald Sanders
  3. In Christ in the School of Prayer by Andrew Murray
  4. Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis
  5. Of The Imitation of Christ by Thomas A Kempis
  6. Discipleship: Up Close and Personal by Chuck Swindoll
  7. Ashamed of the Gospel by John MacArthur Jr. (hardbound)
  8. My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers
  9. Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan
  10. The Song by Calvin Miller

Books You Should Avoid: Once in awhile I find some books that have spiritual stuff but don’t uphold a biblical Christian stand. So please check carefully the book you’re buying. Here are some of them:

  1. self help
  2. Hare Krishna/Divine Consciousness
  3. Robert Schuller
  4. New Age, Yoga and Shirley MacLane
  5. Dianetics by Ron Hubbard
  6. Book of Mormon, Great Controversy, Steps to Christ and other so called religious text from cults.
  7. Horoscope and other fortune telling stuff.

Top Secret Tips: If you find something that you really like but forgot to bring cash or you budget it to something else and you don’t want to come back to find its gone, don’t worry. You can reserve the book for a few days with no additional fee till you can buy it. Just tell the sales clerk or cashier and they can keep it for you.

Booksale changes books every month. That means new (old) books with much lower prices are available. Sometime they do it every first day of the month. So before anyone get something, better know when they change products.

Advantages: Here are some advantages in buying at Booksale:

  1. The price is very low. As I have said, you can buy something for P10.
  2. If your fortunate a Christian book can be in hardbound.
  3. Popular, hard to find and out of print Christian books are available.
  4. Books are printed in the US.

Disadvantages: Although the prices are very low at Booksale (which is an advantage) there are some disadvantages.

  1. Quality of the books-sometimes (but not always) some got ugly because of the price sticker, has missing or falling away pages, worn out, torn and crumpled cover. Flap jackets are missing. Markings like “Used” or “Discarded”. Lots of pencil or ballpen markings.
  2. You won’t get what you want-unlike PCBS or National bookstore you can go to a section for a specific book or topic you’re looking for. Sometime you won’t find any that fits your taste.
  3. Sales clerk- aside for not having one attending, they don’t know about the books and won’t even recommend you one.
  4. Not all malls have Booksale.
  5. Some Christian books available at Booksale (or even at National or PCBS) can be read or in some cases downloaded in the internet for free.
  6. Some are old editions and not updated.
  7. Sometimes they don’t have multiple copies of a title.

Not all the time I buy at Booksale, I visit National or PCBS and purchase (if I have the budget) books that are new, fresh and relevant with the time or culture. Or simply research the internet for specific topics that are available in different digital format free.

Interesting stuff: Over the years of buying, collecting and reading books, I find in Booksale I notice some stuff worth noting. Some of the books are discarded from libraries in the US because it still carries the index card or has the name of the library stamp on the first page. In some books I own, you know it’s a gift because of the handwritten dedication for someone. You can also know who previously owns it with the sticker of the owner’s name complete with address! Other times, someone might be studying the book that you can see pencil or ballpen lines and hand written comments on the spaces of each page.

I hope this article help you in finding a worthy read for your enjoyment and spiritual growth. If you have some question you can send an e-mail: allstarboyscout@yahoo.com or use it to add me up in FaceBook. Booksale has a website:Booksale. Happy Christian book hunting at Booksale!

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A Devotional Life: An Interview with Ed Wrather of Burning Bush Devotional

16 10 2009

Devotional time is a time spent with God and enjoying His word. So how does one get started and put it on his or her busy schedule? These and more when R.O.C.K Ministry talked to Pastor Ed Wrather, writer of Burning Bush Devotional.

1. First things first what do you mean by devotional? Why do we need to spend time with it?
A devotional is a tool that can be used to inspire you spiritually. One definition from dictionary.com is “used in devotions.” A devotional writing may be used in a time devoted to your Lord. I try to include three elements in my devotional writings: Scripture; a story; relevance of the Scripture and story to our lives; and a call to action in some way.

2. How does Bible study differ from devotional time?

I think of devotional time as time spent with a friend drawing closer to my Lord, listening for His voice. In study of the Scriptures we may be more analytical of each word and verse. When we are studying the Bible we are focused and if the Lord has something else to speak to us about it may be harder for Him to communicate. When you are having a devotional time of reading the Bible or a devotional writing, listen for the small, still voice to speak, even if it is about something completely unexpected.

3. How does one prepare to have a devotional? How do students have devotional squeezed in their tight schedule or busy life?

A devotional time in the United States is often called a “quiet time.” It can be hard to find time with a full schedule to actually have the ideal quiet time every day or even to find a quiet place. A short devotional writing can be helpful to facilitate a few quiet moments with the Lord, especially in busy times.

4. So now, a student wants to spend time with devotions, how does he or she start? Does he or she have to buy popular devotional books or just a Bible?

There are a vast number of great devotional writings available for free on the Internet. If you have access to the Internet you can even read the Bible there too. Biblegateway.com is a great resource, and I use it nearly every time that I write a devotional. Radio Bible Class at rbc. org does have some free resources in several translations. They publish the “Our Daily Bread” Devotional, which is perhaps the oldest continuously published devotional.

5. How about you, how do you spend your devotional time? When is the perfect time to do this?

My ideal devotional time, quiet time is to spend an hour or more in prayer, Bible reading, and reading devotional writings in the morning. It is vital to do this on a consistent basis and keep a journal writing down the date, chapters in the Bible read, and if God spoke to you in some way record that too. It is a way of holding yourself accountable and can be valuable, especially if God is calling you to serve Him.
Here is an excerpt from my online testimony. This occurred in 1990 and for years I had been beginning my day with a quiet time when on this particular day God spoke to me:
One night I wrote out a prayer (This is a somewhat dangerous thing to do!) asking that if God really wanted me to preach His Word to reveal that to me in black and white so that I wouldn’t have any doubt. The next morning in my quiet time I turned in the Our Daily Bread devotional guide that I used for some of my quiet time reading to that morning’s selection. The Scripture reading was in Luke chapter 8. Another nice warm devotional thought until I realized that Luke 8 is virtually the same as Mark chapter 5. (God had brought this particular passage of Scripture to my attention six years before.)
Suddenly, I realized that God was answering my prayer that I had written out the night before, “Now the man out of whom the devils were departed besought him that he might be with him: but Jesus sent him away, saying, Return to thine own house, and show how great things God hath done unto thee. And he went his way, and published through out the whole city how great things Jesus had done unto him (Luke 8:38-39).”
Now I realized that God was trying to tell me something, the same thing that He had tried to tell me before. This time I was going to look into this more deeply. I got down a commentary to see what it would say about this Scripture. The commentary said, Jesus had to leave Gadara, but he left behind a preacher. I opened up the Our Daily Bread devotional guide again to read the devotional thought. That day’s devotion was about a man in South America that was saved and grew in the Lord. This man started a Bible study which eventually grew into a church, and he became the pastor of that church. There it was! For me, it was in black and white, God had called and was calling me to preach His Word.
You can read my entire testimony online at my website theburningbush. net Click on the link on the left side of the page “Journey to Fruitfulness.” I have never had any doubt about God’s call upon my life since that morning in 1990.

6. Let me ask you about Burning Bush Devotional, how did it started?

I began the Burning Bush website in January of 1998 where I posted some of my writings. By May of that year my son and several online friends were encouraging me to begin writing an email devotional, and I began to do that on June 8, 1998.

7. How do you write entries for the devotional? Pastor Ed, you have to do this everyday, do you get tired of it?

I believe that it is part of my call to do what I am doing. Currently, I am resending some older devotionals that I wrote in 2002 and 2003 and using it as an opportunity to rewrite and tweak the meaning to make them better. I wrote a new devotional today, but I do not always have the inspiration to write. At times I can write every day for months and then the inspiration suddenly is not there. It can be frustrating. I never tire of writing only of not always having the inspiration, the ideas that are needed to write. I believe it has to do with the amount of prayer support that I have. Only through God’s power can I write devotionals that have meaning and change people’s lives and that will only happen with much prayer by me and many others. Everyone who prays for me and for the devotional has a part in this ministry. It is one of the greatest joys of my life to write a new devotional which God can use to touch hearts and lives.

8. What do people say about Burning Bush? What is the impact it has to them?

Nearly every time I send out a devotional or post it online I receive some feedback about it. Here are a few comments I have received recently:
“What a great way to end the day!”
“great thoughts Ed- challenged me 2 live better for the Lord many thanks”
“This was wonderful today…God is with us each day”
“THANK YOU FOR ALL YOUR GOOD DEVOTIONALS.”
“Thanks Ed, that is exactly what it is all about. I could not have said it better.”
“Well said, Ed. Thanks for sharing this! I’m passing it on, with the prayer
that it will be passed on… and on… and onnnnn.…”
“Your a wonderful blessing to many!!! …Your encouraging words really hit the heart of the matter!!! …God has given you a voice & talent in words to help others!!”
There have been so many people, hundreds of people, maybe more that have written to encourage me to keep writing, and I am thankful for every one of them

9. Please tell me about your ministry, website and how we can get in touch with you?

I am a full-time pastor of a small church in western Oklahoma that has a heart for missions and believes in what I do. The Burning Bush website has been online since January 31, 1998 and you can access the website through these links: http://www.theburningbush.net (The new website)
http://www.theburningbush.org (The old website) or you can use my name, edwrather and add . net, .com or . org
You can email me at edwrather@theburningbush.org
Edwrather@yahoo.com or wrather@dobsonteleco.com
10. Any parting words for those students and professors who might be reading this?

I have never regretted the time that I have spent in serving God, or worshiping God. However, I do have regrets about the years when I did not pursue a closer relationship with my Lord and Savior.

R.O.C.K PICKS: Best online devotionals:
Days of Praise:http://www.icr.org/signup/
Our Daily Bread: http://www.rbc.org/odb/odb.shtml