Monday, October 17, 2011

"With thee is the fountain of life" {Psalm 36: 9}

I am unbelievably thankful for the encouraging words said by my dear friends. I oftentimes sit back and wonder how I've been so richly blessed & quickly remember that it is only by the amazing grace of God. The One thing that binds us together is Him, and yet, how often do I choose to seek the comfort, encouragement, & answers from my friends only, rather than hearing the words of the gracious God who first graced me with those sweet friends? I am so often guilty of this. It is so easy for us to find comfort from someone who is visible & tangible, isn't it? We ask people to pray for us; we tell them our hurts, our longings, & our praises, which are definitely important in their place, but then we forget to lift those things up to the One who has the power to change our circumstances and the One who deserves all the credit for life's praises.  
Then, on the other hand, how often do we cling to things that will never satisfy and are temporal, giving them a higher standing and importance in our lives before our kind & steadfast God? It is SUCH a temptation in this world that is filled with way too many distractions. Of course, God knew we would struggle with these things, which is why He has given us His precious Word, but how often do we forget it is, "alive and powerful... sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow... exposing our innermost thoughts and desires" {Hebrews 4:12}. When I read that, I am reminded of how little I have made the Word of God. If I believed this, wouldn't I spend every waking moment reading it & praying to the God who breathed the words onto those very pages, rather than turning on my television or finding any distraction to keep me away from being with Him? I have such little faith. But, how grateful I am to have a Heavenly Father who can't even help His continual faithfulness toward me! 

A thought from C. H. Spurgeon: 

"There are times in our spiritual experience when human counsel or sympathy, or religious ordinances, fail to comfort or help us. Why does our gracious God permit this? Perhaps it is because we have been living too much without him, and he therefore takes away everything upon which we have been in the habit of depending, that he may drive us to himself. It is a blessed thing to live at the fountain head. While our skin-bottles are full, we are content, like Hagar and Ishmael, to go into the wilderness; but when those are dry, nothing will serve us but "Thou God seest me." We are like the prodigal, we love the swine-troughs and forget our Father's house. Remember, we can make swine-troughs and husks even out of the forms of religion; they are blessed things, but we may put them in God's place, and then they are of no value. Anything becomes an idol when it keeps us away from God; even the brazen serpent is to be despised as "Nehushtan," if we worship it instead of God. The prodigal was never safer than when he was driven to his father's bosom, because he could find sustenance nowhere else. Our Lord favours us with a famine in the land that it may make us seek after himself the more. The best position for a Christian is living wholly and directly on God's grace- still abiding where he stood at first- "Having nothing, and yet possessing all things." Let us never for a moment think that our standing is in our sanctification, our mortification, our graces, or our feelings, but know that because Christ offered a full atonement, therefore we are saved; for we are complete in him. Having nothing of our own to trust to, but resting upon the merits of Jesus- his passion and holy life furnish us with the only sure ground of confidence. Beloved, when we are brought to a thirsting condition, we are sure to turn to the fountain of life with eagerness." 

so thankful.

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