Honor to God
David Brainerd was an American colonial missionary to the Indians who died at the age of twenty-nine. His diary reveals a young man intensely committed to God. Brainerd once said to Jonathan Edwards: “I do not go to heaven to be advanced but to give honor to God. It is no matter where I shall be stationed in heaven, whether I have a high seat or a low seat there. My heaven is to please God and glorify Him, and give all to Him, and to be wholly devoted to His glory.”
Moral Behavior or Christians
A study conducted by The Roper Organization for High Adventure Ministries in 1990 found that the moral behavior of born again Christians actually worsened after their conversions. Examined were incidences of illegal drug use, driving while intoxicated and marital infidelity. The problem can be solved, says one researcher, with a new commitment to accountability and discipleship.
O Lord, my best desire fulfill,
And help me to resign
Life, health, and comfort to Thy will,
And make Thy pleasure mine.
Why should I shrink at Thy command,
Whose love forbids my fears'
Or tremble at the gracious hand
That wipes away my tears'
No, rather let me freely yield
What most I prize to Thee;
Who never hast a good withheld,
Or wilt withhold, from me.
Thy favour, all my journey through,
Thou art engaged to grant;
What else I want, or think I do,
Tis better still to want.
Wisdom and mercy guide my way,
Shall I resist them both'
A poor blind creature of a day,
And crushd before the moth!
But ah! my inward spirit cries,
Still bind me to Thy sway;
Else the next cloud that veils the skies
Drives all these thoughts away.
“Will you please tell me in a word,” said a Christian woman to a minister, “what your idea of consecration is?”
Holding out a blank sheet of paper the pastor replied, “It is to sign your name at the bottom of this blank sheet, and to let God fill it in as He will.”
Several years ago I read an article about Queen Mary, who made it her practice to visit Scotland every year. She was so loved by the people there that she often mingled with them freely without a protective escort. One afternoon while walking with some children, she went out farther than shed planned. Dark clouds came up unexpectedly, so she stopped at a nearby house to borrow an umbrella. “If you will lend me one,” she said to the lady who answered the door, “I will send it back to you tomorrow.” The woman didnt recognize the Queen and was reluctant to give this stranger her best umbrella. So she handed her one that she intended to throw away. The fabric was torn in several places and one of the ribs was broken.
The next day another knock was heard at the door. When the lady opened it, she was greeted by a royal guard, who was holding in her hand her old, tattered umbrella. “The Queen sent me,” he said. “She asked me to thank you for loaning her this.” For a moment the woman was stunned, then, she burst into tears. “Oh, what an opportunity I missed,” she cried. “I didnt give the Queen my very best!”
The surrender of ones will to Jesus is essential to a life of joy and victory. Oswald Chambers called this “giving up my right to myself.” We hold nothing backno earthly life, no material gain, no pride-filled positionbut simply say, “Jesus, do with my life whatever You want.” Many Christians hold back from yielding all to Christ because they fear that it will bring terrible consequences, the death of a loved one or some other great loss.
F. B. Meyer reflected on a turning point to his spiritual life and how he overcame this fear. “The devil said, Dont do it!. There is no knowing what you may come to. At first I thought there was something to it, then I remembered my daughter, who was a little willful then, and loved her own way. I thought to myself as I knelt, Supposing that she were to come and sayFather, from tonight I am going to put my life in your hand. Do with it what you will. Would I call her mother to her side and say, Here is a chance to torment her? .I knew I would not say that. I knew I would say to my wife, Our child is going to follow our will from now on. Do you know of anything that is hurting her? Yes, so and so. Does she love it much? Yes, Oh, she must give it up. But we will make it as easy for her as we can. We must take from her the things that are hurting her, but we will give her everything that will make her life one long summer day of bliss.“
- Fan The Flame, J. Stowell, Moody, 1986, pp. 71ff
- Ask Him Anything, L. J. Ogilvie, Word, 1981, pp. 46ff
- Charles Swindoll, Living Above the Level of Mediocrity, p. 215
Lessons From a Tree
If Thou canst make so wonderful
This thrilling thinga tree,
I wonder, Lord, what Thou couldst make
If man should yield to Thee;
If every time earth-born root
Drank from the wells of God,
If all day long his every breath
Answered Thy slighted not'
Bent, twisted, gnarled, time-eaten,
But a glorious thing this tree,
With hands and heart uplifted
Seeking the face of Thee!
O Thou who made s wondrous fair
This trilling thing, my tree,
Because its every hour is lived
an offering unto Thee,
Oh, take me, root and branch and all
(The years go on apace!)
Grow up in me that radiant life
That shines, Lord, from Thy face!
Transformation not Information
The Scriptures were not given for our information, but for our transformation.