Tag: John MacDuff

Like a bubble on a stream

John MacDuffby John MacDuff

“This world in its present form is passing away!” 1 Corinthians 7:31

“What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes!” James 4:14

“The world and its evil desires are passing away!” 1 John 2:17

We shall come, some day, to see the false and fascinating joys of earth in their true light: like the bubble on the stream, dancing its little moment on the surface–and then vanishing forever!

“My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” Psalm 73:26.

Nothing else; nothing less, can satisfy the cravings of an immortal spirit. All other happiness is a mimic happiness; a wretched counterfeit of the true; a base alloy, on which Satan may have stamped the currency of Heaven; but it is “of the earth, earthy“–and upon it Death will put an extinguisher forever!

“For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?” Mark 8:36

by John MacDuff

The world’s pleasures

John MacDuffby John MacDuff

“Ripples in the Twilight” 1885

“Jabez called on the God of Israel saying: ‘Oh, that You would bless me indeed!’ So God granted him what he requested.” 1 Chronicles 4:10

There is much apparent good not worth calling by the name. What the world speaks of as blessings are, some of them, often worthless; and many of them are undoubtedly evil and detrimental. They are counterfeits–they do not bear upon them the coinage and currency of Heaven. Satan has disguised them–stamped them as true metal–while they are base alloy!

Let us leave our blessings, and the method of their bestowal, with the Giver of every good and perfect gift–into His hand committing our earthly all, with this prayer of intense fervor yet of simple faith, “Oh that You would bless me indeed!” I want nothing which the world calls a blessing, unless You think it proper for me. I want no shadows–no baubles. I do not ask for riches–they may be a snare to me. I do not ask for . . . the cup running over, the barns full, the fig-tree blossoming, the home-nest without the thorn. These might alienate me from Yourself, and bind me only closer to earth!

I want blessings indeed. God, I am no judge of this. Whatever YOU give, will be a true blessing to me. And even if You take it away–I will strive to believe that the dark and painful dealing, is Your kindness to me also.

Yes, we repeat, the world’s pleasures are often curses in disguise–like Cleopatra’s viper, which was hidden in a basket of flowers. There is often . . . an adder lurking in the bed of roses, a fly in the ointment, poison in the wine-cup!

But the blessings of God are blessings bearing His own divine seal and signature. They may come . . . in frowning providences, in baffling dispensations, in strokes of the chastening rod. For the present they may seem not joyous, but grievous. But I am content to be in His hands–joyful or sorrowful, in health or in sickness, living or dying. O my Father, give Your own blessing, and I shall bow my heart in submission; for I can only hear in it accents of paternal love!

by John MacDuff