[The Classic Christian Network] Last Call: Streams In the Desert (Weekly)

Posted: April 3, 2011 in Uncategorized

lastcalldevotionalnetwork@gmail.com

“All Devotional Posts are Presented in Weekly Format”

(Posted on Sunday for all Seven days of the Week)

 

 

 This Weeks  

STREAMS IN THE DESERT

 


SUNDAY

April 3

MORNING

The Brightest Colors

            “It is good for me that I have been afflicted” (Ps. 119:71).

            It is a remarkable circumstance that the most brilliant colors of plants are to be seen on the highest mountains, in spots that are most exposed to the wildest weather. The brightest lichens and mosses, the loveliest gems of wild flowers, abound far up on the bleak, storm-scalped peak.

            One of the richest displays of organic coloring I ever beheld was near the summit of Mount Chenebettaz, a hill about 10,000 feet high, immediately above the great St. Bernard Hospice. The whole face of an extensive rock was covered with a most vivid yellow lichen which shone in the sunshine like the golden battlement of an enchanted castle.

            There, in that lofty region, amid the most frowning desolation, exposed to the fiercest tempest of the sky, this lichen exhibited a glory of color such as it never showed in the sheltered valley. I have two specimens of the same lichen before me while I write these lines, one from the great St. Bernard, and the other from the wall of a Scottish castle, deeply embossed among sycamore trees; and the difference in point of form and coloring between them is most striking.

            The specimen nurtured amid the wild storms of the mountain peak is of a lovely primrose hue, and is smooth in texture and complete in outline, while the specimen nurtured amid the soft airs and the delicate showers of the lowland valley is of a dim rusty hue, and is scurfy in texture, and broken in outline.

            And is it not so with the Christian who is afflicted, tempest-tossed, and not comforted? Till the storms and vicissitudes of God’s providence beat upon him again and again, his character appears marred and clouded; but trials clear away the obscurity, perfect the outlines of his disposition, and give brightness and blessing to his life.

            Amidst my list of blessings infinite
      Stands this the foremost, that my heart has bled;
      For all I bless Thee, most for the severe.
      –Hugh Macmillan

MONDAY


April 4

MORNING

  Alone In The Desert

            “And he took them, and went aside privately into a desert place” (Luke 9:10).

            In order to grow in grace, we must be much alone. It is not in society that the soul grows most vigorously. In one single quiet hour of prayer it will often make more progress than in days of company with others. It is in the desert that the dew falls freshest and the air is purest.–Andrew Bonar

            “Come ye yourselves apart and rest awhile,
      Weary, I know it, of the press and throng,
      Wipe from your brow the sweat and dust of toil,
      And in My quiet strength again be strong.

            “Come ye aside from all the world holds dear,
      For converse which the world has never known,
      Alone with Me, and with My Father here,
      With Me and with My Father not alone.

            “Come, tell Me all that ye have said and done,
      Your victories and failures, hopes and fears.
      I know how hardly souls are wooed and won:
      My choicest wreaths are always wet with tears.

            “Come ye and rest; the journey is too great,
      And ye will faint beside the way and sink;
      The bread of life is here for you to eat,
      And here for you the wine of love to drink.

            “Then fresh from converse with your Lord return,
      And work till, daylight softens into even:
      The brief hours are not lost in which ye learn
      More of your Master and His rest in Heaven.”

 

TUESDAY


April 5

MORNING

  “And after the earthquake a fire; and after the fire a sound of gentle stillness” (1 Kings 19:12, RV margin.)
       
      A soul, who made rapid progress in her understanding of the Lord, was once asked the secret of her easy advancement. She replied tersely, “Mind the checks.” And the reason that many of us do not know and better understand Him is, we do not give heed to His gentle checks, His delicate restraints and constraints. His is a still, small voice. A still voice can hardly be heard. It must be felt. A steady, gentle pressure upon the heart and mind like the touch of a morning zephyr to your face. A small voice, quietly, almost timidly spoken in your heart, but if heeded growing noiselessly clearer to your inner ear. His voice is for the ear of love, and love is intent upon hearing even faintest whispers. There comes a time also when love ceases to speak if not responded to, or believed in. He is love, and if you would know Him and His voice, give constant ear to His gentle touches.

            In conversation, when about to utter some word, give heed to that gentle voice, mind the check and refrain from speech. When about to pursue some course that seems all clear and right and there comes quietly to your spirit a suggestion that has in it the force almost of a conviction, give heed, even if changed plans seem highest folly from standpoint of human wisdom. Learn also to wait on God for the unfolding of His will. Let God form your plans about everything in your mind and heart and then let Him execute them. Do not possess any wisdom of your own. For many times His execution will seem so contradictory to the plan He gave. He will seem to work against Himself. Simply listen, obey and trust God even when it seems highest folly so to do. He will in the end make “all things work together,” but so many times in the first appearance of the outworking of His plans,

            “In His own world He is content
      To play a losing game.”

            So if you would know His voice, never consider results or possible effects. Obey even when He asks you to move in the dark. He Himself will be gloriously light in you. And there will spring up rapidly in your heart an acquaintanceship and a fellowship with God which will be overpowering in itself to hold you and Him together, even in severest testings and under most terrible pressures.–Way of Faith

WEDNESDAY


April 6

MORNING

   Through the Fire

            “So the Lord blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning” (Job 42:12).

            Through his griefs Job came to his heritage. He was tried that his godliness might be confirmed. Are not my troubles intended to deepen my character and to robe me in graces I had little of before? I come to my glory through eclipses, tears, death. My ripest fruit grows against the roughest wall. Job’s afflictions left him with higher conceptions of God and lowlier thoughts of himself. “Now,” he cried, “mine eye seeth thee.

            And if, through pain and loss, I feel God so near in His majesty that I bend low before Him and pray, “Thy will be done,” I gain very much. God gave Job glimpses of the future glory. In those wearisome days and nights, he penetrated within the veil, and could say, “I know that my Redeemer liveth.” Surely the latter end of Job was more blessed than the beginning.–In the Hour of Silence

            “Trouble never comes to a man unless she brings a nugget of gold in her hand.”

            Apparent adversity will finally turn out to be the advantage of the right if we are only willing to keep on working and to wait patiently. How steadfastly the great victor souls have kept at their work, dauntless and unafraid! There are blessings which we cannot obtain if we cannot accept and endure suffering. There are joys that can come to us only through sorrow. There are revealings of Divine truth which we can get only when earth’s lights have gone out. There are harvests which can grow only after the plowshare has done its work.–Selected

            Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seamed with scars; martyrs have put on their coronation robes glittering with fire, and through their tears have the sorrowful first seen the gates of Heaven. –Chapin

            I shall know by the gleam and glitter
      Of the golden chain you wear,
      By your heart’s calm strength in loving,
      Of the fire you have had to bear.

            Beat on, true heart, forever;
      Shine bright, strong golden chain;
      And bless the cleansing fire
      And the furnace of living pain!
      –Adelaide Proctor

 

THURSDAY


April 7

MORNING

 Bearing the Sting

            “He opened not his mouth” (Isa. 53:7).

            How much grace it requires to bear a misunderstanding rightly, and to receive an unkind judgment in holy sweetness! Nothing tests the Christian character more than to have some evil thing said about him. This is the file that soon proves whether we are electro-plate or solid gold. If we could only know the blessings that lie hidden in our trials we would say like David, when Shimei cursed him, “Let him curse; . . . it may be . . . that the Lord will requite me good for his cursing this day.”

            Some people get easily turned aside from the grandeur of their life-work by pursuing their own grievances and enemies, until their life gets turned into one little petty whirl of warfare. It is like a nest of hornets. You may disperse the hornets, but you will probably get terribly stung, and get nothing for your pains, for even their honey is not worth a search.

            God give us more of His Spirit, “who, when he was reviled, reviled not again”; but “committed himself to him that judgeth righteously.” “Consider him that endureth such contradiction of sinners against himself.”–A. B. Simpson

            “Before you” He trod all the path of woe,
      He took the sharp thrusts with His head bent low.

            He knew deepest sorrow and pain and grief,
      He knew long endurance without relief,
      He took all the bitter from death’s deep cup,
      He kept not a blood-drop but gave all up.
      “Before you” and for you, He won the fight
      To bring you to glory and realms of light.
      –L.S.P.

FRIDAY


April 8

MORNING

 Don’t Rush

            “Who is among you that feareth Jehovah, that obeyeth the voice of his servant? He that walketh in darkness and hath no light, let him trust in the name of Jehovah and rely upon his God” (Isa. 50:10, RV).

            What shall the believer do in times of darkness–the darkness of perplexity and confusion, not of heart but of mind? Times of darkness come to the faithful and believing disciple who is walking obediently in the will of God; seasons when he does not know what to do, nor which way to turn. The sky is overcast with clouds. The clear light of Heaven does not shine upon his pathway. One feels as if he were groping his way in darkness.

            Beloved, is this you? What shall the believer do in times of darkness? Listen! “Let him trust in the name of the Lord, and rely upon his God.”

            The first thing to do is do nothing. This is hard for poor human nature to do. In the West there is a saying that runs thus, “When you’re rattled, don’t rush”; in other words, “When you don’t know what to do, don’t do it.”

            When you run into a spiritual fog bank, don’t tear ahead; slow down the machinery of your life. If necessary, anchor your bark or let it swing at its moorings. We are to simply trust God. While we trust, God can work. Worry prevents Him from doing anything for us. If our minds are distracted and our hearts distressed; if the darkness that overshadows us strikes terror to us; if we run hither and yon in a vain effort to find some way of escape out of a dark place of trial, where Divine providence has put us, the Lord can do nothing for us.

            The peace of God must quiet our minds and rest our hearts. We must put our hand in the hand of God like a little child, and let Him lead us out into the bright sunshine of His love.
      He knows the way out of the woods. Let us climb up into His arms, and trust Him to take us out by the shortest and surest road.–Dr. Pardington

            Remember we are never without a pilot when we know not how to steer.

            “Hold on, my heart, in thy believing–
      The steadfast only wins the crown;
      He who, when stormy winds are heaving,
      Parts with its anchor, shall go down;
      But he who Jesus holds through all,
      Shall stand, though Heaven and earth should fall.

            “Hold out! There comes an end to sorrow;
      Hope from the dust shall conquering rise;
      The storm foretells a summer’s morrow;
      The Cross points on to Paradise;
      The Father reigneth! cease all doubt;
      Hold on, my heart, hold on, hold out.”

SATURDAY

 

April 9

MORNING

 Don’t Fret

            “Do not begin to be anxious” (Phil. 4:6, PBV).

            Not a few Christians live in a state of unbroken anxiety, and others fret and fume terribly. To be perfectly at peace amid the hurly-burly of daily life is a secret worth knowing. What is the use of worrying? It never made anybody strong; never helped anybody to do God’s will; never made a way of escape for anyone out of perplexity. Worry spoils lives which would otherwise be useful and beautiful. Restlessness, anxiety, and care are absolutely forbidden by our Lord, who said: “Take no thought,” that is, no anxious thought, “saying what shall we eat, or what shall we drink, or wherewithal shall we be clothed?” He does not mean that we are not to take forethought and that our life is to be without plan or method; but that we are not to worry about these things. People know you live in the realm of anxious care by the lines on your face, the tones of your voice, the minor key in your life, and the lack of joy in your spirit. Scale the heights of a life abandoned to God, then you will look down on the clouds beneath your feet. –Rev. Darlow Sargeant

            It is always weakness to be fretting and worrying, questioning and mistrusting. Can we gain anything by it? Do we not unfit ourselves for action, and unhinge our minds for wise decision? We are sinking by our struggles when we might float by faith.

            Oh, for grace to be quiet! Oh, to be still and know that Jehovah is God! The Holy One of Israel must defend and deliver His own. We may be sure that every word of His will stand, though the mountains should depart. He deserves to be confided in. Come, my soul, return unto thy rest, and lean thy head upon the bosom of the Lord Jesus. –Selected

            “Peace thy inmost soul shall fill Lying still!”

Last Call Devotional Network

 

Last Call Digest  Last Call Devotionals  Last Call Devotions  Last Call Journal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s