This Berberis grows in the grounds of our chapel, which I planted a few years ago. Its lovely yellow flowers are currently out, and it adds a welcome dash of hue. Interestingly, the bark, stem and root of the bush were used for the manufacture of yellow dye, but not the flowers, as one might expect. The thorns have been used to clean gold coins, being strong enough to remove dirt but not to scratch the precious metal. Of more value, than gold, however, as well as costly dye and beautiful bushes, is a Christian’s faith (1 Peter 1:7). Though it cannot always be seen, and is seldom extolled, it is most beautiful to God.

The Lord will feed the poor,
Nor shall their fare be mean;
Rich blessings are in store,
In grace’s magazine;
From which rich treasure Christ will feed
The hungry soul that feels his need.

Poor trembling sinner, come
And knock at mercy’s door;
Though ruined and undone,
The Lord relieves the poor;
He knows and loves the beggar’s knock,
Nor will he send them empty back.

He came to save the lost,
Nor will he change his mind;
The souls that in him trust
He will not leave behind;
With him they shall for ever reign,
And glorify the Lamb once slain.

-William Gadsby, No 629, Gadsby's Hymns