Charles Spurgeon, Gleanings Among the Sheaves
Welcome to New Loft Chamber...
“Self-sacrifice brought Christ into the world. And self-sacrifice will lead us, His followers, not way from, but into the midst of men. Wherever men suffer, there will we be to comfort. Wherever men strive, there will we be to help. Wherever men fail, there will we be to uplift. Self-sacrifice means not indifference to our times and our fellows, it means absorption in them. It means forgetfulness of self in others. It means not that we should live one life, but a thousand lives—binding ourselves to a thousand souls by the filaments of so loving a sympathy that their lives become ours. Only when we humbly walk this path, seeking truly in it not our own things but those of others, we shall fined the promise true, that he who loses his life shall find it. Only when, like Christ, and in loving obedience to His call and example, we take no account of ourselves, but freely give ourselves to others, we shall find, each in his measure, the saying true of himself also: 'Wherefore also God hath highly exalted him.' The path of self-sacrifice is the path to glory.”
-- Benjamin Breckinridge Warfield, from his sermon Imitating the Incarnation
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Charles Spurgeon, Gleanings Among the Sheaves
And splendid courage comes but with the test.
Some natures ripen and some natures bloom
Only on blood-wet soil, some souls prove great
Only in moments dark with death and doom.
"God gets his best soldiers out of the highlands of affliction." -- Charles Spurgeon, Gleanings Among the Sheaves
Thursday, November 20, 2008
To Mrs. Fowler,
Who has been a big inspiration in my life and I could never show you the appreciation of all the kindness you have bestowed on me during my formative years of growing up---Thanks to you, I had some beautiful clothes to wear--
May God Bless You Richly,
I knew my great grandmother to be a godly woman. Her simple faith and trust in the Lord and the kindness she showed to those less fortunate than herself casts a long shadow that reaches even now into my own life and thoughts on the purpose of our "callings" -- that being, to glorify God and to love and serve our neighbors.
Then the righteous will answer him, saying, "Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you?...And the King will answer them, "Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you did it to me." (Matt. 25:40, ESV)
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
"This is my comfort in all my affliction, that your promise gives me life." Ps. 119:50 (ESV)
Or, as the NASB puts it, "that Thy word has revived me."
Says Matthew Henry of the quickening power of the Word of God,
"If through grace it make us holy, there is enough in it to make us easy, in all conditions, under all events."
So let us take heart today, "For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope." Rom. 15:4 (ESV)
Monday, November 17, 2008
Sunday, November 16, 2008
"My times are in your hand."
Let this precious truth divest your mind of all needless, anxious care for the present or the future. Exercising simple faith in God, "Do not be anxious about anything." Learn to be content with your present lot, with God's dealings with, and His disposal of, you. You are just where His providence has, in its inscrutable but all-wise and righteous decision, placed you. It may be a position painful, irksome, trying, but it is right. Oh, yes! it is right. Only aim to glorify Him in it. Wherever you are placed, God has a work for you to do, a purpose through you to be accomplished, in which He blends your happiness with His glory. And, when you have learned the lessons of His love, He will transfer you to another and a wider sphere, for whose nobler duties and higher responsibilities the present is, perhaps, but disciplining and preparing you. Covet, then, to live a life of daily dependence upon God. Oh, it is a sweet and holy life! It saves from many a desponding feeling, from many a corroding care, from many an anxious thought, from many a sleepless night, from many a tearful eye, and from many an imprudent and sinful scheme. Repairing to the "covenant ordered in all things and sure," you may confide children, friends, calling, yourself, to the Lord's care, in the fullest assurance that all their 'times' and yours are in His hand. [Emphasis added.]
What confidence it gives us to know that we may entrust ourselves, our brothers, sons, daughters, wives and homes into the Lord's hand. Great is his grasp; none can snatch from his hands!
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Over the past few weeks I have been thinking about these words of Nehemiah to his kinsmen who were discouraged in the work of rebuilding Jerusalem because of the opposition and enemies they faced. Here is what Nehemiah said,
"Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes." (Neh. 4:14, Esv)
These words have been a great encouragement to me as I think upon my calling as a husband and father. The opposition and enemies we face today are strong, but the Lord is the Master over them and our families are worth the fight. Consider the commentary of Matthew Henry on the Nehemiah text:"Come," says he, "be not afraid of them, but behave yourselves valiantly, considering, [1.] Whom you fight under. You cannot have a better captain: Remember the Lord, who is great and terrible; you think your enemies great and terrible, but what are they in comparison with God, especially in opposition to him? He is great above them to control them, and will be terrible to them when he comes to reckon with them." Those that with an eye of faith see the church's God to be great and terrible will see the church's enemies to be mean and despicable. The reigning fear of God is the best antidote against the ensnaring fear of man. He that is afraid of a man that shall die forgets the Lord his Maker, (Isa. 51:12-13). [2.] "Whom you fight for. You cannot have a better cause; you fight for your brethren (Ps. 122:8), your sons, and your daughters. All that is dear to you in their world lies at stake; therefore behave yourselves valiantly."
May God give us all grace and strength to fight the good fight of faith...for his glory and the good of our family, friends and neighbors.