Month: February 2016

Don’t Bite The Stick

Charles Spurgeonby Charles Spurgeon

“Flowers from a Puritan’s Garden” 1883

“As children will thank the tailor, and think they owe their new clothes to him rather than to their parent’s bounty–so we often look to the instrument of blessing, and thank that instead of God.”

Second causes must never be made to stand before the First Cause. Friends and helpers are all very well as servants of our Father–but our Father must have all our praise.

There is a similar evil in the matter of trials and afflictions. We are apt to be angry with the instrument of our affliction–instead of seeing the hand of God over all, and meekly bowing before it.

It was a great help to David in bearing with the railing Shimei–when he saw that God had appointed this provocation as a chastisement. He would not allow his hasty captains to take the scoffer’s head, but meekly said, “Let him alone, and let him curse, for the Lord has bidden him.”

When a dog is struck–he will bite the stick! If he were wise, he would observe that the stick only moves as the hand directs it. Just so, when we discern God in our tribulations, we are helped to be quiet and endure with patience.

Let us not act like silly children, but trace matters to their fountain-head, and act accordingly. May the Spirit of wisdom make us understand.

“He is the LORD; let Him do what is good in His eyes.” 1 Samuel 3:18

“Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away–may the name of the LORD be praised.” Job 1:21

“Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?” Job 2:10

“When times are good, be happy; but when times are bad, consider: God has made the one as well as the other.” Ecclesiastes 7:14

by Charles Spurgeon

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Maintaining The Proper Relationship

Oswald Chambersby Oswald Chambers

…the friend of the bridegroom… —John 3:29

Goodness and purity should never be traits that draw attention to themselves, but should simply be magnets that draw people to Jesus Christ. If my holiness is not drawing others to Him, it is not the right kind of holiness; it is only an influence which awakens undue emotions and evil desires in people and diverts them from heading in the right direction. A person who is a beautiful saint can be a hindrance in leading people to the Lord by presenting only what Christ has done for him, instead of presenting Jesus Christ Himself. Others will be left with this thought— “What a fine person that man is!” That is not being a true “friend of the bridegroom”— I am increasing all the time; He is not.

To maintain this friendship and faithfulness to the Bridegroom, we have to be more careful to have the moral and vital relationship to Him above everything else, including obedience. Sometimes there is nothing to obey and our only task is to maintain a vital connection with Jesus Christ, seeing that nothing interferes with it. Only occasionally is it a matter of obedience. At those times when a crisis arises, we have to find out what God’s will is. Yet most of our life is not spent in trying to be consciously obedient, but in maintaining this relationship— being the “friend of the bridegroom.” Christian work can actually be a means of diverting a person’s focus away from Jesus Christ. Instead of being friends “of the bridegroom,” we may become amateur providences of God to someone else, working against Him while we use His weapons.

by Oswald Chambers