Surfing around the blogosphere this morning I came across a piece written by G.D. Watson that I read years ago. Sometimes I get lost in the shuffle of life. My efforts don’t seem to accomplish much and it’s possible as a Christian to get weary and downtrodden. Certain days can be a struggle and it often seems that other more “noble” Christians have it all together, their lives and work somehow touched by holier hands than mine. I know it’s ridiculous and unfruitful to think these thoughts and I gave myself a good talking to about having them. Other times I marvel at the level of Carnality in the life of certain Christians I know. I dare not pluck out the speck, knowing full well the log in my own eye but I can be shocked sometimes by certain behaviors I dare not partake in. I fear for these folks and try desperately not to question them or their salvation but am left to ponder my own sinfulness, I pray I never get too proud to to say like the Pharasee “thank you God that I am not like them” Because I know that I am.
A little while after having this conversation with myself I came across this article at Apprising Ministries (you can read the original here) and I remembered how interesting it was reading it the first time and realizing what a Gift God gives to His Children through spiritual discipline. God never overlooks one part of our lives that He knows needs refining and I am learning to value that aspect of my relationship with Him. I was bought at oh so great a price! I am indeed not my own and I often need reminding of it.
“Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.”
“And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.”
May the Lord bless you through these words from G.D. Watson:
If God has called you to be really like Christ in all your spirit, He will draw you into a life of crucifixion and humility and put on you such demands of obedience, that He will not allow you to follow other Christians, and in many ways He will seem to let other good people do things which He will not let you do.
Others can brag on themselves, and their work, on their success, on their writings, but the Holy Spirit will not allow you to do any such thing, and if you begin it, He will lead you into some deep mortification that will make you despise yourself and all you good works.
The Lord will let others be honored and put forward, and keep you hid away in obscurity because He wants to produce some choice fragrant fruit for His glory, which can be produced only in the shade.
Others will be allowed to succeed in making money, but it is likely God will keep you poor because he wants you to have something far better than gold and that is a helpless dependence on Him; that He may have the privilege of supplying your needs day by day – out of an unseen treasury.
God will let others be great, but He will keep you small. He will let others do a great work for Him and get credit for it, but He will make you work and toil on without knowing how much you are doing; and then to make your work still more precious, He will let others get the credit for the work you have done, and this will make your reward ten times greater when He comes.
The Holy Spirit will put strict watch over you, with a jealous love, and will rebuke you for little words and feelings, or for wasting your time, which other Christians never seem distressed over.
So make up your mind that God is an infinite Sovereign, and has a right to do what He pleases with His own, and He will not explain to you a thousand things which may puzzle your reason in His dealing with you. He will wrap you up in a jealous love, and let other people say and do many things that you cannot do or say.
Settle it forever, that you are to deal directly with the Holy Spirit, and that He is to have the privilege of tying your tongue, or chaining your hand, or closing your eyes, in ways that others are not dealt with.
Now, when you are so possessed with the Living God that you are, in your secret heart, pleased and delighted over this particular personal, private, jealous guardianship and management of the Holy Spirit over your life, you will have found the vestibule of heaven.