Virtue or Vice?

“A thing moderately good is not so good as it ought to be. Moderation in temper is always a virtue; but moderation in principle is always a vice.”

~Thomas Paine, The Rights of Man, 1791

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Others May, You Cannot

I posted this several years ago, but it has been on my mind lately. It’s definitely worthy of a reprint.

 

If God has called you to be really like Christ in all your spirit, He will draw you into a life of crucifixion and humility and put on you such demands of obedience, that He will not allow you to follow other Christians, and in many ways He will seem to let other good people do things which He will not let you do.

Others can brag on themselves, and their work, on their success, on their writings, but the Holy Spirit will not allow you to do any such thing, and if you begin it, He will lead you into some deep mortification that will make you despise yourself and all you good works.

The Lord will let others be honored and put forward, and keep you hid away in obscurity because He wants to produce some choice fragrant fruit for His glory, which can be produced only in the shade.

Others will be allowed to succeed in making money, but it is likely God will keep you poor because he wants you to have something far better than gold and that is a helpless dependence on Him; that He may have the privilege of supplying your needs day by day – out of an unseen treasury.

God will let others be great, but He will keep you small. He will let others do a great work for Him and get credit for it, but He will make you work and toil on without knowing how much you are doing; and then to make your work still more precious, He will let others get the credit for the work you have done, and this will make your reward ten times greater when He comes.

The Holy Spirit will put strict watch over you, with a jealous love, and will rebuke you for little words and feelings, or for wasting your time, which other Christians never seem distressed over.

So make up your mind that God is an infinite Sovereign, and has a right to do what He pleases with His own, and He will not explain to you a thousand things which may puzzle your reason in His dealing with you. He will wrap you up in a jealous love, and let other people say and do many things that you cannot do or say.

Settle it forever, that you are to deal directly with the Holy Spirit, and that He is to have the privilege of tying your tongue, or chaining your hand, or closing your eyes, in ways that others are not dealt with.

Now, when you are so possessed with the Living God that you are, in your secret heart, pleased and delighted over this particular personal, private, jealous guardianship and management of the Holy Spirit over your life, you will have found the vestibule of heaven.

–G. D. Watson

Are You Running On Empty?

Make time to pray.  “The great freight and passenger trains are never too busy to stop for fuel. No matter how congested the yards may be, no matter how crowded the schedules are, no matter how many things demand the attention of the trainmen, those trains always stop for fuel.”  M.E. Andross

Prayer Month

I would like to dedicate the month of December to prayer. I want to think about it, share quotes and testimonies about it, but most of all I just want to do it!

Here is something simple, yet profound that Jesus shared about prayer.

 

Luke 18:1

 “And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;”

 

In our children’s church this quarter, we have learned that a parable is a simple story that teaches a lesson. Here is the parable that Jesus shared that relates to prayer.

 

Luk 18:2-8 “saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man:

 

And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary.

 

And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man;

 

 

Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me.

 

And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith.

 

 

And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?

 

I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?”

 

Persistence is one of the keys to our prayers being answered.

 

Blown Away – Part 3

As my sister Karen gave her eulogy of Tom, she mentioned that she had found my brother’s prayer list as she was sorting through some of his belongings. It was 14 pages long. Wow! Tears filled my eyes. Later, when the family was all together at Karen’s house, I asked if I could see the list. It was incredible. I saw names of individuals and names of churces. Everything was organized into categories such as family members, missionaries, people I have witnessed to, etc. I saw some names of people I haven’t heard from or let alone even thought of in years, but Tom thought of them and prayed for them. My mom mentioned that he went through his list every Friday. I was totally blown away! As I was thinking about this prayer list, a scripture came to my mind. These are words that Jesus spoke about prayer.

But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.

 

Mathew 6:6

 

 

I can’t help but believe that my brother who prayed much in secret is now being rewarded openly in the presence of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Tom, although you have departed from this earth, I know God is still working in people’s hearts and lives through the prayers that you prayed for them. Thank you for the example you left that is challenging me to want to pray more. Perhaps one day, when we reach the other side, God will reveal to us just how much truth is in this quote.

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

Alfred Lord Tennyson

 

 

Great Quote On Prayer

Every converted sinner is a soul revived to prayer. Every saint restored from backsliding, is a soul returned to the life and power of prayer. Every congregation enjoying an outpouring of the Spirit, is a congregation revived and alive to the prayer meeting.
The Prayer Meeting and Its History, J. B. Johnston