Clouds and Darkness

Oswald Chambersby Oswald Chambers

Clouds and darkness surround Him… —Psalm 97:2

A person who has not been born again by the Spirit of God will tell you that the teachings of Jesus are simple. But when he is baptized by the Holy Spirit, he finds that “clouds and darkness surround Him….” When we come into close contact with the teachings of Jesus Christ we have our first realization of this. The only possible way to have full understanding of the teachings of Jesus is through the light of the Spirit of God shining inside us. If we have never had the experience of taking our casual, religious shoes off our casual, religious feet— getting rid of all the excessive informality with which we approach God— it is questionable whether we have ever stood in His presence. The people who are flippant and disrespectful in their approach to God are those who have never been introduced to Jesus Christ. Only after the amazing delight and liberty of realizing what Jesus Christ does, comes the impenetrable “darkness” of realizing who He is.

Jesus said, “The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life” (John 6:63). Once, the Bible was just so many words to us — “clouds and darkness”— then, suddenly, the words become spirit and life because Jesus re-speaks them to us when our circumstances make the words new. That is the way God speaks to us; not by visions and dreams, but by words. When a man gets to God, it is by the most simple way— words.

by Oswald Chambers

 

Think of all the hard things there are in your life

Grace Gems Whiteby Grace Gems

Susannah Spurgeon

“Ah, Lord God! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and outstretched arm. There is nothing too hard for You!” Jeremiah 32:17

“Then the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah: I am the LORD, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for Me?” Jeremiah 32:26-27

Dear reader, your difficulties and trials may not be similar to those of “the weeping prophet”–but they are very real, and seemingly insurmountable to you. It is a fact that, of yourself, you can neither overcome nor endure them. So I want to remind you that the Lord’s hand is not shortened–that what was true of His power in Jeremiah’s time, is as certainly true today. Whatever present hardship may press upon you, or whatever burden may be weighing you down–you, yes, you may look up to Him with confident faith, and say, “There is nothing too hard for You!”

Oh, the blessed peace which such an assurance brings! I do not know what your particular sorrow or hardship may be–but I do know that, whatever its nature–cruel, or bitter, or hopeless–it is as “nothing” to Him! He is able to deliver you–as easily as you can call upon Him for support and help.

Now, dear friend, think of all the hard things there are in your life: poor circumstances, difficult duties, grievous pains, sore struggles, bitter disappointments, harsh words, sinful thoughts, a hard heart of your own, a hard heart in others.

Gather all these, and many more together, and pile them one on another until you have one great mountain of afflictions–and your God still calmly asks the question: “Is there anything too hard for Me?”

When our hearts are weary of life’s cares and crosses, when our courage flags because of our helplessness, and we cry out with the patriarch, “All these things are against me!”–then what a support and stronghold is the fact that our God has all power in heaven and on earth! There is nothing too mighty for Him to manage–there is nothing too insignificant to escape His notice! Jeremiah’s faith . . .
sees no obstacles, stumbles at no hindrances, faints under no burden, shrinks from no responsibilities–because he realizes the sublime Omnipotence of God, and fortifies himself by calling to remembrance His “outstretched arm” in the creation of the heavens and the earth. Cannot we do likewise?

by Grace Gems