May 7, 2014

the names of men

"I will write upon them the name of my God" Revelation 3:12

O there is a great difference between the names of the saints--and the names of the wicked!

The saints are called . . .
  godly, from God;
  Christians, from Christ;
  spiritual, from the Spirit;
  heavenly, from Heaven, because their conversation is there, because their Head is there, and they are heirs of heaven.

But the wicked are called . . .
  devilish, from the devils;
  the cursed, from the curses;
  worldlings, from the world;
  and sinners, from sin.

The ungodly are called . . .
  dogs,
  vipers,
  swine,
  thorns,
  ravening wolves!

But the saints are called . . .
  jewels,
  treasures,
  kings,
  doves,
  lilies,
  heirs of the kingdom of glory!

And hence it is, that some godly men have thought it a greater honor to be a member of Christ--than to be a king upon a throne! Indeed, a holy heart is better than a great estate!

-Grace Gems,
William Dyer
, "Christ's Famous Titles"

May 6, 2014

freedom

    I have learned the hard way the cost of an idol - more than once. But it has never hurt this much before. God be praised for being more powerful than my pain! Christ has so faithfully forgiven me for an incomparable, inconceivable number of iniquities which I have committed against Him. Through His grace and salvation, idols no longer have power over me; may I never succumb to their lies ever again.

would we really rather have things our way?

"Wait on the LORD; be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart; wait, I say, on the LORD!" Psalm 27:14

Will we ever learn this? If we would live in this world for the honor and glory of Christ, we must understand that it is our glorious privilege and responsibility to wait on our God. If we would honor the Lord Jesus we must wait on Him faithfully . . .
  believing His word,
  trusting His promises,
  resting in His finished work as our Savior,
  hiding beneath His precious blood,
  depending on Him for righteousness, salvation, and acceptance with our God.

We must wait on Him patiently . . .
  without murmuring,
  without complaint,
  without dissatisfaction,
  without discontent.
God does not always work immediately, but He always works. He never performs His works on our carnal schedule, but according to His all wise eternal purpose of grace. Let us be patient. God knows what's best for His glory and our immortal souls. He knows when, where, and how to work deliverance for us, far better than we do.

We must wait submissively. We must submit our vain wills to His sovereign, almighty, perfect will. We must wait on Him with a spirit of humility and submission--as children waiting on their father to help them, feed them, teach them, and provide for them. His name is Jehovah-Jireh (The Lord Will Provide). Our God will not forget us. It is our responsibility to submit ourselves to Him, His will, and His ways.

We must wait on Him gladly. We quickly forget that not only is it our duty to wait on him, but our privilege to wait on His Majesty. Would we really rather have things our way? Has not our way proved to be abject misery and shame, countless times before? Would we rather have our foolish way--than His who is Love, Mercy, and Wisdom? Let us, as the dear children of God, wait on Him cheerfully.

We must wait on Him expectantly.
He will do all that He has promised.
He will save us.
He will remember us.
He will destroy our enemies.
He will bring us to Himself.
He will dispel the darkness.
He will accomplish His purpose for us and in us.
Let us wait on Him who cannot fail, with earnest expectation and lively hope.

We must wait on Him prayerfully. We must have our eyes perpetually fixed upon Him. Let us give ourselves to constant prayer, so that day by day, hour by hour, and moment by moment--we are looking to Him for fresh supplies of mercy and grace to sustain us, strengthen us, and keep us to the end.

We must wait on Him with persistence and perseverance. We must be resolute and determined to wait on Him forever if needs be. In His time, on His terms, when the time is best, right, and perfect--He will come and He will deliver us from all our sorrows, all our troubles, and all our fears.

Children of God--our Savior will never leave us to ourselves!
He is with us always!
He loved us!
He chose us!
He suffered, bled, and died for us!
He redeemed us with His own precious blood!
He called us by His Spirit and gave us life from the dead!
He has staked His glory as God, upon our everlasting salvation!

He has promised to do us good, and to withhold no good thing from us! How can we not faithfully, joyfully, and patiently wait on such a God as this?

"Wait on the LORD; be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart; wait, I say, on the LORD!"

-Grace Gems,
Frank Hall

May 5, 2014

true excellency

Worldly men imagine that there is true excellency and true happiness in those things which they are pursuing. They think that if they could but obtain them, that they would be happy. But when they obtain them, and cannot find happiness, they look for happiness in something else, and are still upon the futile pursuit.

But Christ Jesus has true excellency, and so great excellency that when they come to see it they look no further, but the mind rests there. "Yes, He is altogether lovely! This is my Beloved, and this is my Friend!" Song of Songs 5:16
 
-Grace Gems,
Jonathan Edwards

May 4, 2014

mana from heaven

"[...]He could easily leave me destitute--apart from Him, I must go hungry and thirsty, a beggar and in rags. All to Him I owe! Do I praise Him for His bounty as I ought?

The daily bread is to be received in faith. Morning by morning the men of Israel gathered the manna. My Lord would prove me, by keeping me a perpetual pensioner on His charity, and a continual guest at His table. I can never be self-sufficient. I never can walk alone. I am taught to cling and trust--to look up and wait in hope.

[...] I cannot thrive on the grace of yesterday, as nourishing and ample as that was for yesterday's need. I am dependent on God hour after hour, and minute after minute, for . . .
  fresh grace,
  fresh wisdom,
  fresh peace to garrison my heart and mind,
  fresh strength to overcome the world, the flesh and the devil."


-Grace Gems, Alexander Smellie
"The Secret Place" 1907

May 2, 2014

withered rose

When drifts of snow are dried away by gusts of wind and rain
Tree buds are blooming
The clouds are moving
And clear away all the pain

Though life is crowded by confusion that retreats, returns and grows
God's guiding my heart
Through this troubling part
Making a garden of this withered rose

thank You for the little things

Thank You, Lord, for tea biscuits, for long walks at dusk,
    for bronze mailbox numbers that reflect light like lava.

Thank You for books upon books - more than one can read in a lifetime!

Thank You for friends, who love me even when I feel most alone;
    for family that wraps me up in 'snuggly' hugs
    and tell me that they love me.

Thank You for cameras, for Drama Class, for fifteen choices of tea.

Thank You for alarm clocks - even when I want least to wake up.

Thank You for table lamps, cookbooks, video games, and pillows.

Thank You for fingers for typing and playing piano; for prayer, for stories,
    for funny TV shows, for John MacArthur sermons,
    for a building for my church to worship in.

Thank You for voices with which to sing praises to You!

Thank You for watch faces that spin an tick a happy tune in my ear,
    for cat food dishes, for autumn orange hand-knit blankets,
    for green jeans, for stuffed toy bunnies.

Thank You for wilted roses, for shiny silver earrings, for recycled paper notebooks,
    for bottles full of moss, for unscented lotion,
    for Swedish dolls that stack inside of each other.

Thank You for dried flowers, for eyeglasses, for chopsticks, for 'present' rings.

Thank You for tales by the Brothers Grimm, for emery boards, for postage stamps.

Thank You for sandwiches, for ribbons, for electrical cords, for backpacks.

Thank You for the little things, 
    the forgotten things, 
    the things we take for granted.
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