Tuesday, August 31, 2010

"Behold, then, beloved, the high vantage-ground on which a saint of God stands, with regard to his hope of heaven. He stands 'outside' of his own righteousness, in the righteousness of another."

--Octavius Winslow

Monday, August 30, 2010

"Almighty God, our heavenly Father,
Who declares Your glory and shows forth Your handiwork
in the heavens and in the earth;
Deliver us, we beseech You, in our several callings,
from the service of mammon*
That we may do the work which You give us to do,
in truth, in beauty, and in righteousness,
with singleness of heart as thy servants,
and to the benefit of our fellow men;
For the sake of Him who came among us as One that serves,
Your Son Jesus Christ our Lord."

--"Prayer for One’s Calling," from The Book of Common Prayer.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Like a river glorious is God's perfect peace,
Over all victorious in its bright increase;
Perfect, yet it floweth fuller every day,
Perfect, yet it groweth deeper all the way.

Hidden in the hollow of his blessed hand,
Never foe can follow, never traitor stand;
Not a surge of worry, not a share of care,
Not a blast of hurry, touch the spirit there.

Every joy or trial falleth from above,
Traced upon our dial by the Sun of Love.
We may trust him fully all for us to do;
They who trust him wholly, find him wholly true.

Stayed upon Jehovah, hearts are fully blessed,
Finding, as he promised, perfect peace and rest.

--Frances R. Havergal, Like a River Glorious.

Friday, August 27, 2010

"Paul and James both say that we should rejoice in our trials because of their beneficial results. It is not the adversity considered in itself that is to be the ground of our joy.


Rather, it is the expectation of the results, the development of our character that should cause us to rejoice in adversity. God does not ask us to rejoice because we have lost our job, or a loved one has been stricken with cancer, or a child has been born with an incurable birth defect.


But He does tell us to rejoice because we believe He is in control of those circumstances and is at work through them for our ultimate good."

--Jerry Bridges

Thursday, August 26, 2010

"The branch of the vine does not worry, and toil, and rush here to seek for sunshine, and there to find rain. No; it rests in union and communion with the vine; and at the right time, and in the right way, is the right fruit found on it. Let us so abide in the Lord Jesus."

--Hudson Taylor

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Visit with my family in Philadelphia, August 2010



"Whenever those things present themselves to us which would lead us away from resting in God alone, let us make use of this sentiment as an antidote against them, that we have sufficient cause for being contented, since he who has in himself an absolute fullness of all good has given himself to be enjoyed by us.

In this way we will experience our condition to be always pleasant and comfortable; for he who has God as his portion is destitute of nothing which is requisite to constitute a happy life."

--John Calvin, Commentary on the Psalms.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

"It is finished! (John 19:30).

Has Christ perfected and completely finished all His work for us? How sweet a relief is this to against all the defects and imperfections of all the works which are wrought by us.

There is nothing finished that we do. All our duties are imperfect duties; they come off lamely and defectively from our hands. O, there is much sin and vanity in the best of our duties.

But Jesus Christ has finished all His work, though we can finish none of ours. And so, even though we are defective, poor, imperfect creatures in ourselves, yet we are complete in Christ. His complete obedience being imputed to us, makes us complete, and without fault before God."

--John Flavel, The Fountain of Life.

Monday, August 23, 2010

"All afflictions which tend to…bring the soul to God, keep up a life of communion with the Redeemer, make us sensible of the gracious influence of the Holy Spirit, spiritualize our affections, wean our hearts from a world from which we must soon part, and promote a more intimate acquaintance with that world in which we are shortly forever to dwell—are undeserving the name of afflictions! They are among the sweetest mercies of God! God removes earthly comforts—in order to make room for heavenly delights. He empties the soul of all creature-comforts—that He may fill it with Creator-mercies. We should embrace our afflictions, as affording the choicest proofs of divine love."

--Robert Hawker, "Zion's Pilgrim."

Sunday, August 22, 2010

"Only with the benefit of hindsight is it possible to see all the intricate details of God's plan working together for the good of his people. So also in our own lives, we may well have no idea what God is doing. He may seem hidden and remote, refusing to answer our prayers and to give us what we so earnestly ask of him. Wait! The end of our story has not yet been told, and who knows how the pieces of the jigsaw that at present seem to have no logical connection with one another will ultimately come together . . . sometimes [God's work] is a quiet faithfulness to his promises in the seemingly ordinary providences of life, bring about in the hearts of his people what he has purposed."

--Iain M. Duguid

Saturday, August 21, 2010

"Trust the past to the mercy of God, the present to His love, and the future to His providence."

--Augustine of Hippo (354-430).

Friday, August 20, 2010

"Dilemma wretched: how shall holiness
Of brilliant light unshaded, tolerate
Rebellion’s fetid slime, and not abate
In its own glory, compromised at best?
Dilemma wretched: how can truth attest
That God is love, and not be shamed by hate
And wills enslaved and bitter death—the freight
Of curse deserved, the human rebels’ mess?
The Cross! The Cross! The sacred meeting-place
Where, knowing neither compromise nor loss,
God’s love and holiness in shattering grace
The great dilemma slays! The Cross! The Cross!
The holy, loving God whose dear Son dies
By this is just—and one who justifies."

--D.A. Carson, Holy Sonnets of the Twentieth Century

Thursday, August 19, 2010

"No soldiers of Christ are ever lost, missing or left dead on the battlefield."

--John Charles Ryle (1816 - 1900).

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

"Christians don’t think God will love us because we’re good, but that God will make us good because He loves us."

--C.S. Lewis

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

"God, in his providence, has the power and the will to work all things together for good for his people. This does not mean that everything that happens to us is, in itself, good. Really bad things do happen to us. But they are only proximately bad; they are never ultimately bad. That is, they are bad only in the short (proximate) term, never in the long term. Because of the triumph of God's goodness in all things, he is able to bring good for us out of the bad. He turns our tragedies into supreme blessings."


--R.C. Sproul

Monday, August 16, 2010

"Now, contentment is one of the flowers of heaven, and if we would have it, it must be cultivated; it will not grow in us by nature; it is the new nature alone that can produce it, and even then we must be specially careful and watchful that we maintain and cultivate the grace which God has sown in us."

--C.H. Spurgeon

Sunday, August 15, 2010

"This hard place in which you perhaps find yourself is the very place in which God is giving you opportunity to look only to Him, to spend time in prayer, and to learn long-suffering, gentleness, meekness--in short, to learn the depths of the love that Christ Himself has poured out on all of us."

--Elisabeth Elliot

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Remembrance by Matt Redman

"How can God have mercy on sinners without destroying justice? What can it mean that God forgives iniquity and transgression and sin, yet by no means clears the guilty (Ex. 34:7)? How can a righteous and holy God justify the ungodly (Rom. 4:5)?

The answer to all these questions is found at the cross of Calvary, in Jesus’ substitutionary death for his people. A righteous and holy God can justify the ungodly because in Jesus’ death, mercy and justice were perfectly reconciled. The curse was rightly executed, and we were mercifully saved."

--Greg Gilbert, What is the Gospel?

Friday, August 13, 2010

"God is not a belief to which you give your assent. God becomes a reality whom you know intimately, meet everyday, one whose strength becomes your strength, whose love, your love. Live this life of the presence of God long enough and when someone asks you, 'Do you believe there is a God?' you may find yourself answering, “No, I do not believe there is a God. I know there is a God."

--Ernest Boyer, Jr.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

"God's loving us is a means for our joyfully glorifying Him. . . . The love of God is not God's making much of us, but God's saving us from self-centered sin so that we can enjoy making much of Him forever.  And our love to others is not our making much of them, but our helping them to find eternal satisfaction in making much of God.  The only ultimate love is a love that aims at satisfying people in the glory of God.  Any love that terminates on man is eventually destructive.  It does not lead a person to the only lasting joy, namely God.  Love must be God-centered or it is not the greatest love; it leaves people without their deepest need and only hope."

--John Piper, Taste and See.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

"More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of."

--Tennyson

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

"Love, again, will dispose our hearts to submission to the will of God, for we are more willing that the will of those we love should be done, than of others. We naturally desire that those we love should be suited, and that we should be agreeable to them, and true affection and love to God will dispose the heart to acknowledge God’s right to govern, and that He is worthy to do it, and so will dispose to submission. Love to God will dispose us to walk humbly with Him, for he that loves God will be disposed to acknowledge the vast distance between God and himself. It will be agreeable to such an one, to exalt God, and set Him on high above all, and to lie low before Him. A true Christian delights to have God exalted on his own abasement, because he loves Him. He is willing to own that God is worthy of this, and it is with delight that he casts himself in the dust before the Most High, from his sincere love to Him."

--Jonathan Edwards, Christian Love As Manifested in the Heart and Life.

Monday, August 9, 2010

"As a bride adorned for her husband, goes forth of her bedchamber unto the marriage, so shall the saints go forth of their graves, unto the marriage of the Lamb.

Joseph had a joyful coming out from the prison, Daniel from the lion’s den, and Jonah from the whale’s belly – yet these are but faint representations of the saint’s coming forth from the grave, at the resurrection. Then shall they sing the song of Moses and of the Lamb, in highest strains; death being quite swallowed up in victory.

They had, while in this life, sometimes sung, by faith the triumphant song over death and the grave, 'O death, where is your sting? O grave where is your victory?' But then they will sing the same, from sight and sense; the black band of doubts and fears, which frequently disturbed them, and disturbed their minds, is forever dispersed and driven away."

--Thomas Boston, Human Nature in its Fourfold State.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

"That which hinders love to men, will hinder the exercise of love to God; for, as was observed before, the principle of a truly Christian love, is one. If love is the sum of Christianity, surely those things which overthrow love, are exceedingly unbecoming Christians. An envious Christian, a malicious Christian, a cold and hard-hearted Christian, is the greatest absurdity and contradiction. It is as if one should speak of dark brightness, or a false truth!"


--Jonathan Edwards, Christian Love As Manifested in the Heart and Life.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

"Do not lose heart about doing good, for in due time we will reap a harvest, if we do not grow weary."

--Galations 6:9

Friday, August 6, 2010

"Oh, let me live in Thy realities,
Nor substitute my notions for Thy facts."


--George MacDonald

Thursday, August 5, 2010

"When we go to the cross, we see our God dying for us. If you let any other god down, it will beat you up. If you live for people’s approval or your career or possessions or control or anything else and you don’t make it or you mess up, then you’ll be left feeling afraid, downcast, or bitter. But when you let Christ down, he still loves you. He doesn’t beat you up; he died for you.

Let his love win your love, and let that love replace all other affections. The secret of change is to renew your love for Christ as you see him crucified in your place."

--Tim Chester, You Can Change.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

"My soul is not at rest, there comes a strange and secret whisper to my spirit like a dream of night, that tells me I am on enchanted ground.

The voice of my departed Lord, “Go! teach all nations!” comes on the night air and awakes mine ear!

Why stay I here? the vows of God are on me, and I may no longer stop to play with shadows or pluck earthly flowers, till I my work have done and rendered up account.

And I will go; I may no longer doubt to give up friends and idle hopes and every tie that binds my heart to thee, my country.

Henceforth it matters not, if storm or sunshine be my earthly lot, bitter or sweet my cup, I only pray, “God make me holy and my spirit nerve for the stern hour of strife.”

Through ages of eternal years my spirit never shall repent that toil and suffering once were mine below."


--Nathan Brown, an 1800’s missionary.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

"A Missionary was never designed by Jesus Christ to gather a congregation of a hundred or two natives and sit down at his ease, as contented as if every sinner was converted, while thousands around him are eating each other's flesh and drinking each other's blood, living and dying without the gospel. For my own part, I cannot content myself within the narrow limits of a single reef."


--John Williams, missionary to the South Sea Islands.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Julie with Susanna Harrold

"I will lift up my eyes to the hills—from whence comes my help? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth.

He will not allow your foot to be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, He who keeps Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.

The LORD is your keeper; the LORD is your shade at your right hand. The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night.

The LORD shall preserve you from all evil; He shall preserve your soul.

The LORD shall preserve your going out and your coming in
from this time forth, and even forevermore."

--Psalm 121

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Hero

Great article on society's perspectives on courtship

“If the Lord be with us, we have no cause of fear. His eye is upon us, His arm over us, His ear open to our prayer--His grace sufficient, His promises unchangeable.”

--John Newton

Summer afternoon

"Summer afternoon-summer afternoon; to me these have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language."

--Henry James