He comes in carrying an armful of books—this the way we’ve seen him throughout the conference—stumbling down the halls weighted down by his stacks. It’s the final workshop of the Jubilee Conference and I’ve wandered into Byron Borger’s presentation amid a cloud of college students. I’m wanting to hear more of his story—to get his voice right…these are the things that editors do.
“I’m honored people came,” he laughs. “I wasn’t sure anyone would show up…”
He sets the books down on the table up front.
“Mind if I pray?” He says. “Let’s start with prayer.”
And this is the first glimpse I get of Byron Borger’s heart. He’s a man that starts with prayer. And in his prayer, he asks the Lord this: “…be with us now as we become a people who desire to learn for your glory…”
I am learning that this is just like Byron. He and his bride started their bookstore in Dallastown, Pa. over 30 years ago for this very reason: A desire to learn and help others learn for the glory of God. Byron shares that Hearts and Minds Bookstore grew out of his relationship with the CCO and Jubilee, that the love for reading and knowledge that he and Beth shared seemed a natural fit for such a thing. And, as their website says, it’s more than just a bookstore.
“What distinguishes us most is our enthusiasm for the development of a uniquely Christian worldview where Christ’s Lordship is honored and lived out in relevant ways in the midst of our highly secularized, post-modern culture. We offer quality books for the sake of faithful Christian living. We serve business folk, scientists, artists, college students, moms, dads (and kids!), pastors, poets and politicos. We believe Biblical faith leads to "thinking Christianly" about every area of life.”
That’s the way he talks. All the time. Byron has read a lot of books. His love for knowledge is tangible, as is his desire to help others fall in love with it. Any book you are looking for, Byron and Beth are sure to have. And if they don’t, they’ll get it for you. Because it’s about more than selling books for them.
In that quick hour and fifteen minutes of Byron’s workshop, he covered wide terrain. He talked about culture-making, assuming a Christian worldview, the importance of reading widely, the crisis of compartmentalization, the erosion of the Christian mind…and so many other topics. He covered a year’s worth of sermons, I believe.
Mostly he encouraged us to read.
“To live that holistic seamless life is a call to adventure and a call to think through the connections of life. Reading is a strategy to help you do that. The word disciple means ‘learner’, so when Jesus called his disciples he called them to be life-long learners.”
Isn’t that what he calls us to be too?
If you are looking for a book in the future, might I recommend you shop for it at Hearts and Minds? Byron and Beth have left the welcome mat out for you.
Byron is writing our final post in our discussion of Tim Keller and Katherine Leary Alsdorf’s Every Good Endeavor over at The High Calling today. If you have time, I think you’ll be blessed by what he has to say.
How do you embrace the God-joy? Every Monday I’ll be sharing one of my Playdates with God. I would love to hear about yours. It can be anything: outside, quiet time. Maybe it’s solitary. Maybe it’s loud and crowded. Just find Him. Be with Him.