Vision and Darkness

Oswald Chambersby Oswald Chambers

When the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and behold, horror and great darkness fell upon him. —Genesis 15:12

Whenever God gives a vision to a Christian, it is as if He puts him in “the shadow of His hand” (Isaiah 49:2). The saint’s duty is to be still and listen. There is a “darkness” that comes from too much light— that is the time to listen. The story of Abram and Hagar in Genesis 16 is an excellent example of listening to so-called good advice during a time of darkness, rather than waiting for God to send the light. When God gives you a vision and darkness follows, wait. God will bring the vision He has given you to reality in your life if you will wait on His timing. Never try to help God fulfill His word. Abram went through thirteen years of silence, but in those years all of his self-sufficiency was destroyed. He grew past the point of relying on his own common sense. Those years of silence were a time of discipline, not a period of God’s displeasure. There is never any need to pretend that your life is filled with joy and confidence; just wait upon God and be grounded in Him (see Isaiah 50:10-11).

Do I trust at all in the flesh? Or have I learned to go beyond all confidence in myself and other people of God? Do I trust in books and prayers or other joys in my life? Or have I placed my confidence in God Himself, not in His blessings? “I am Almighty God…”— El-Shaddai, the All-Powerful God (Genesis 17:1). The reason we are all being disciplined is that we will know God is real. As soon as God becomes real to us, people pale by comparison, becoming shadows of reality. Nothing that other saints do or say can ever upset the one who is built on God.

by Oswald Chambers


Reverent and sweet submission

Grace Gems Whiteby Grace Gems

Joseph Hall 1574-1656

“I was silent; I would not open my mouth, for You are the one who has done this!” Psalm 39:9

He is not worthy to pass for a child of God, who does not receive His stripes with reverent meekness. Tears may be allowed–but a murmuring frown is no better than rebellion.

Let infidels, then, and ignorants, who think they suffer by chance–repine at their adversities, and be dejected with their afflictions.

For me, who knows that I have a Father in Heaven who is full of mercy and compassion, whose providence has measured out the due proportions of my sorrows, counting my sighs, and reserving the tears which He wrings from me, in His bottle–why do I not patiently lie down and put my mouth in the dust, meekly submitting to His holy pleasure, and blessing the hand from which I smart?

“You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in Your bottle. You have recorded each one in Your book!” Psalm 56:8

by Grace Gems