Tag: Circumstances

A cross of their own choosing

Thomas Watsonby Thomas Watson

“The Art of Divine Contentment”

“I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know both how to have a little, and I know how to have a lot. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being content–whether well-fed or hungry, whether in abundance or in need.” Philippians 4:11-12

Paul knew how to manage in every state–he learned to be content whatever his circumstances. If he was in prosperity, he knew how to be thankful. If he was in adversity, he knew how to be patient. He was neither lifted up with prosperity–nor cast down with adversity.

A Christian should be content in any and every situation. Many are contented in some conditions–but not in every condition. They can be content in a wealthy state. When they have the streams of milk and honey–now they are content. But if the wind turns and is against them–now they are discontented. While they have a silver crutch to lean upon–they are contented; but if God breaks this crutch–now they are discontented.

Many would be content with their affliction–if God would allow them to pick and choose. They could better endure sickness–than poverty; or bear loss of estate–than loss of children. If they might have a cross of their own choosing, they would be content.

But a contented Christian does not desire to choose his cross–but leaves God to choose for him. He is content both for the kind of the afflictions, and the duration of the afflictions, which God gives him. A contented man says, “Let God apply whatever medicine He pleases, and let it lie on as long as He desires. I know when it has done its cure, and eaten the venom of sin out of my heart–that God will take it away.

A contented Christian, being sweetly captivated under the authority of the Word, desires to be wholly at God’s disposal, and cheerfully lives in whatever circumstances that God has placed him in. “I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties.” (2 Corinthians 12:10) He does not only submit to God’s dealings, but rejoices in them!

by Thomas Watson

God causes all things to work together for good

Grace Gems Whiteby Thomas Moor

“Counsels and Thoughts for the Spiritual Life of Believers” 1882

“We know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose!” Romans 8:28

“According to His purpose”–for He had purposed before the world was who His called ones would be, and also purposed that all things would work for their good. The doings of His grace in time, are ever the result of the purposes of His grace before the foundation of the world! Romans 8:30

Those who are CALLED according to His purpose.

These are called to know themselves as guilty before God and deserving of eternal condemnation. These are called to know the all-sufficiency of Christ to save. These are called to trust in His sin-atoning death as their only hope of salvation. These are called out of the world. They no longer revel in the world’s gaieties, or are swayed by its corrupt principles. These are called to be followers of the despised Lord Jesus, treading in His footsteps. This is the calling which distinguishes those who love God, and for whose good God causes all things to work together.

Yes, “God causes all things to work together for good . . . ” It is not said that they work singly or alone, but in relationship to one another–they “work together.” One little thing which we cannot at all understand, or see the reason of–the Lord sees is necessary to make several other things properly work for our good. Without that one very unpleasant thing–all the rest would not be for our benefit.

We are too apt to look at things singly, and therefore our mind often becomes perplexed. A single thread is not of much importance in itself–but if left out in the weaving, the pattern in the loom would be rendered imperfect.

These “all things” are so many shuttles running to and fro, weaving the web of goodness and blessing for the children of God. The hand that throws the shuttles is the hand of Jesus. In the web which He weaves, no thread will be found misplaced, when the weaving is over.

Therefore let us leave all things in the hands of Jesus, who has the whole plan of the life of each believer always before Him, and who in His infinite wisdom causes all things to work together for good to them, so as to produce the best results and accomplish all His purposes of love.

Let us trust Him at all times, even when . . . our expectations of earthly things are disappointed, or when our plans are frustrated, or when darkness surrounds our path, or when trials and affliction are our portion.

Be assured that when we have attained a keener vision and a fuller understanding than our pilgrim state affords us–we shall see that God caused all things to perfectly work together for good to those who love Him, to those who are called according to His purpose! We will then testify to the wisdom, power, and love of Him who does all things well!

by Thomas Moor