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Continue in prayer. Col. iv. 2.
Dost thou want nothing? Then I fear thou dost not know thy poverty. Hast thou no mercy to ask of God? Then may the Lord’s mercy show thee thy misery. A prayerless soul is a Christless soul. Prayer is the lisping of the believing infant, the shout of the fighting believer, the requiem of the dying saint falling asleep in Jesus.—Spurgeon.
In whom all the building, fitly framed together, groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord. Eph. ii. 21.
The life-tabernacle is a wondrous building; there is room for workers of all kinds in the uprearing of its mysterious and glorious walls. If we cannot do the greatest work, we may do the least. Our heaven will come out of the realization of the fact that it was God’s tabernacle we were building, and under God’s blessing that we were working.—Joseph Parker.
Love not the world. 1 John ii. 15.
Love it not, and yet love it. Love it with the love of Him who gave His Son to die for it. Love it with the love of Him who shed His blood for it. Love it with the love of angels, who rejoice in its conversion. Love it to do it good, giving your tears to its sufferings, your pity to its sorrows, your wealth to its wants, your prayers to its miseries, and to its fields of charity, and philanthropy, and Christian piety, your powers and hours of labor. You cannot live without affecting it, or being affected by it. You will make the world better, or it will make you worse.
God help you by His grace and Holy Spirit so to live in the world as to live above it, and look beyond it; and so to love it that when you leave it, you may leave it better than you found it.—Guthrie.
Thou openest thine hand, and satisfiest the desire of every living thing. Psa. cxlv. 16.
Desire, it is a dainty word! It were much that He should satisfy the need, the want; but He goeth far beyond that. Pity is moved to meet our need; duty may sometimes look after our wants; but to satisfy the desire implies a tender watchfulness, a sweet and gracious knowledge of us, an eagerness of blessing. God is never satisfied until He has satisfied our desires.—Mark Guy Pearse.
Ye servants of the Lord, which by night stand in the house of the Lord. . . . The Lord that made heaven and earth bless thee out of Zion. Psa. cxxxiv. 1, 3.
If I would know the love of my friend, I must see what it can do in the winter. So with the divine love. It is very easy for me to worship in the summer sunshine, when the melodies of life are in the air and the fruits of life are on the tree. But let the song of the bird cease, and the fruit of the tree fall; and will my heart still go on to sing? Will I stand in God’s house by night? Will I love Him in His own night? Will I watch with Him even one hour in His Gethsemane? Will I help to bear His cross up the Via Dolorosa? My love has come to Him in His humiliation. My faith has found Him in His lowliness. My heart has recognized His majesty through His mean disguise, and I know at last that I desire not the gift, but the Giver. When I can stand in His house by night, I have accepted Him for Himself alone.—George Matheson.
He that saith he abideth in Him ought himself also so to walk even as He walked. 1 John ii. 6.
The preaching that this world needs most is the sermons in shoes that are walking with Jesus Christ.—Selected.
Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the Lord. Hosea vi. 3.
The Lord has brought us into the pathway of the knowledge of Him, and bids us pursue that path through all its strange meanderings until it opens out upon the plain where God’s throne is. Our life is a following on to know the Lord. We marvel at some of the experiences through which we are called to pass, but afterwards we see that they afforded us some new knowledge of our Lord. . . . We have not to wait for some brighter opportunity; but by improvement of the present are to build for ourselves a bridge to that future.—G Bowen.
Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house. Gen. xii. 1.
Abraham . . . was gathered to his people. Gen. xxv. 8.
After all communion we dwell as upon islands, dotted over a great archipelago, each upon his little rock with the sea dashing between us; but the time comes when, if our hearts are set upon that great Lord whose presence makes us one, there shall be no more sea and all the isolated rocks shall be parts of a great continent . . . If we cultivate that sense of detachment from the present and of having our true affinities in the unseen, if we dwell here as strangers because our citizenship is in heaven, then death will not drag us away from our associates nor hunt us into a lonely land, but will bring us where closer bonds shall knit the “sweet societies” together, and the sheep shall couch close by one another because all gathered round the one Shepherd. Then many a tie shall be re-woven, and the solitary wanderer meet again the dear ones whom he had “loved long since and lost awhile."—Alex. McLaren.
Therefore will the Lord wait, that He may be gracious unto you. Isa. xxx. 18.
This is God’s way. In the darkest hours of the night His tread draws near across the billows. As the day of execution is breaking, the angel comes to Peter’s cell. When the scaffold for Mordecai is complete, the royal sleeplessness leads to a reaction in favor of the threatened race.
Ah, soul, it may have come to the worst with thee ere thou art delivered; but thou wilt be! God may keep thee waiting, but He will ever be mindful of His covenant, and will appear to fulfil His inviolable word.—F. B. Meyer.
He loveth our nation and he hath built us a synagogue. Luke vii. 5.
Marble and granite are perishable monuments, and their inscriptions may be seldom read. Carve your names on human hearts; they alone are immortal!—Theodore Cuyler.
As many as I love I . . . chasten. Rev. iii. 19.
I once saw a dark shadow resting on the bare side of a hill. Seeking its cause I saw a little cloud, bright as the light, floating in the clear blue above. Thus it is with our sorrow. It may be dark and cheerless here on earth; yet look above and you shall see it to be but a shadow of His brightness whose name is Love.—Dean Alford.
What means these stones? Josh. iv. 21.
Ye also as living stones. 1 Pet. ii. 5. (R. V.)
There should be something so remarkable, so peculiar about the life and conversation of a Christian that men should be compelled to ask, “What does this mean?”. . . . Is there anything in your character, words, and habits of life so different from the world around you that men are involuntarily compelled to ask themselves or others, “What does this mean?” Not that there is to be a forced singularity, a peculiarity for the sake of being peculiar; that were merely to copy the pharisaism of ancient days. . . . Oh, that we might realize that this is the purpose for which God sends us into the world, as He sent His only begotten Son!—S. A. Blackwood.
All . . . saw his face as it had been the face of an angel Acts vi. 15.
The face is made every day by its morning prayer, and by its morning look out of windows which open upon heaven.—Joseph Parker.
At the commandment of the Lord they rested in the tents, and at the commandment of the Lord they journeyed. Num. ix. 23.
This is the secret of peace and calm elevation. If an Israelite, in the desert, had taken it into his head to make some movement independent of Jehovah; if he took it upon him to move when the crowd was at rest, or to halt while the crowd was moving, we can easily see what the result would have been. And so it will ever be with us. If we move when we ought to rest, or rest when we ought to move, we shall not have the divine presence with us.—C. H. M.
In whom also, after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise. Eph. i. 13.
The Lord puts a seal upon His own, that everybody may know them. The sealing in your case is the Spirit producing in you likeness to the Lord. The holier you become, the seal is the more distinct and plain, the more evident to every passer-by, for then will men take knowledge of you that you have been with Jesus.—Andrew Bonar.
Boast not thyself of to-morrow. Prov. xxvii. 1.
The only preparation for the morrow is the right use of to-day. The stone in the hands of the builder must be put in its place and fitted to receive another. The morrow comes for naught, if to-day is not heeded. Neglect not the call that comes to thee this day, for such neglect is nothing else than boasting thyself of to-morrow.—G. Bowen.
I will help thee, saith the Lord. Isa. xli. 14.
O my soul, is not this enough? Dost thou...