When prayerfully claimed, what are some of God's promises that provide a wealth of hope and encouragement?
cccBehold, the days come, saith
the Lord, that I will perform that good thing which I have
promised . . . Jeremiah 33:14.
cccThere is no one who has pursued a wrong course whom Jesus will not pardon and receive and bless if he will come to Him believingly and cast himself, conscious of his weakness and helplessness, upon His sympathy and His strength. . . .
cccWhat a comforting thought that Jesus is touched with the feelings of our infirmities! He has been tempted in all points as we are tempted, and just the right kind of help has been provided for us, that if we only put our feet in the prints of Jesus' footsteps, we will be safe. He has hallowed the path His feet have trod. We hear His inviting Voice, 'Follow Me. I am the Light of the world. They that follow Me shall not walk in darkness. In the world ye shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world' (see Matt. 4:19; John 8:12; 16:33).
cccIn actual experience Christ has overcome the world, and how great is His love to us when He invites us to come to Him in all our afflictions, distresses, heartaches, and perplexities, with the assurance that He will help us. He will bring health and brightness into our lives. If we place our hand in the hand of Jesus Christ, He will place our feet on solid rock, a better foundation than we ever had before. He will make us more strong in His strength and He will work with all our efforts.
cccThen when our own souls have experienced His healing touch we are brought into close fellowship with Jesus and we will be laborers together with God not only to restore the erring, to repair broken hearts and souls, but to impart courage and faith and confidence. This is the work of God's laborers--to bring to Jesus souls who have gone away from His direct teachings and have apparently gone to pieces on the rocks and reefs of sin. These broken lives, which have been apparently hopeless, He promises to make whole. UL 162; or Letter 56, May 28, 1898.
cccIf the human agent consents, God can and will so identify His will with all our thoughts and aims, so blend our hearts and minds into conformity to His Word, that when obeying His will, we are only carrying out the impulses of our minds. UL 187; or Letter 22, June 22, 1896.
cccChrist might, because of our guilt, have moved far from us. But instead of moving farther away from us, He came and dwelt among us, filled with all the fullness of the Godhead, to be one with us, that through His grace we might attain to perfection. By a death of shame and suffering He paid man's ransom. What self-sacrificing love is this! From the highest excellency He came, His divinity clothed with humanity, descending step by step to the very depths of humiliation. No line can measure the depth of this love. Christ has shown us how much God can love and our Redeemer suffer in order to secure our complete restoration. He desires His children to reveal His character, to exert His influence, that other minds may be drawn into harmony with His mind.
cccChrist, our Saviour, in whom dwelt absolute perfection, became sin for the fallen race. He did not know sin by the experience of sinning, but He bore the terrible weight of the guilt of the whole world. He became our propitiation, that all who receive Him may become sons of God. UL 191; or MS 91, June 26, 1902.
cccYes, we shall find the answer to our prayers; for God will do exceedingly abundantly above our highest expectation. What precious witness we shall then bear for God. What an honor we shall be to the truth of His word. We shall be able to say, 'I waited patiently for the Lord; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry. He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the Lord. Blessed is that man that maketh the Lord his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies' (Ps. 40:1-4). UL 185; or Letter 87, June 20, 1900.
cccAs we try to become acquainted with our heavenly Father through His word, angels will draw near, our minds will be strengthened, our characters will be elevated and refined. We shall become more like our Saviour. DA 70.
cccAnd as we behold the beautiful and grand in nature, our affections go out after God. While the spirit is awed, the soul is invigorated by coming in contact with the Infinite through His works. DA 70.
cccWe could not know the gracious purposes of God toward us, but for the promises, for it is from them alone we learn what He has prepared for those who love Him. As the flowers in God's wise economy are constantly drawing the properties from earth and air to develop into the pure and beautiful buds and flowers and give forth their fragrance to delight the senses, so shall it be with us.
cccWe draw from God's promises all that peace, that comfort, that hope that will develop in us the fruits of peace, joy, and faith. And by bringing these promises into our own life we bring them always into the lives of others. Then let us appropriate these promises to ourselves. . . . They are like the precious flowers in the garden of God. They are to awaken our hope and expectation, and lead us to a firm faith and reliance upon God. They are to strengthen us in trouble and teach us precious lessons of trust in God. UL 15; or Letter 27, January 1, 1886.
cccIf we had to bear anything which Jesus did not endure, then upon this point Satan would represent the power of God as insufficient for us. Therefore Jesus was 'in all points tempted like as we are.' Heb. 4:15. He endured every trial to which we are subject. And He exercised in His own behalf no power that is not freely offered to us. . . . His life testifies that it is possible for us also to obey the law of God. DA 24.
cccCommunion with God through prayer develops the mental and moral faculties, and the spiritual powers strengthen as we cultivate thoughts upon spiritual things. DA 70-71.
cccThe means by which we can overcome the wicked one is that by which Christ overcame,--the power of the word. God does not control our minds without our consent; but if we desire to know and to do His will, His promises are ours: 'Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.' 'If any man willeth to do His will, he shall know of the teaching.' John 8:32; 7:17, R. V. Through faith in these promises, every man may be delivered from the snares of error and the control of sin.
cccEvery man is free to choose what power he will have to rule over him. None have fallen so low, none are so vile, but that they can find deliverance in Christ. The demoniac, in place of prayer, could utter only the words of Satan; yet the heart's unspoken appeal was heard. No cry from a soul in need, though it fail of utterance in words, will be unheeded. Those who will consent to enter into covenant relation with the God of heaven are not left to the power of Satan or to the infirmity of their own nature. They are invited by the Saviour, 'Let him take hold of My strength, that he may make peace with Me; and he shall make peace with Me.' Isa. 27:5. The spirits of darkness will battle for the soul once under their dominion, but angels of God will contend for that soul with prevailing power. The Lord says, 'Shall the prey be taken from the mighty, or the lawful captive delivered? . . . Thus saith the Lord, Even the captives of the mighty shall be taken away, and the prey of the terrible shall be delivered: for I will contend with him that contendeth with thee, and I will save thy children.' Isa. 49:24, 25. DA 258-259.
cccHe who blessed the nobleman at Capernaum is just as desirous of blessing us. But like the afflicted father, we are often led to seek Jesus by the desire for some earthly good; and upon the granting of our request we rest our confidence in His love. The Saviour longs to give us a greater blessing than we ask; and He delays the answer to our request that He may show us the evil of our own hearts, and our deep need of His grace. He desires us to renounce the selfishness that leads us to seek Him. Confessing our helplessness and bitter need, we are to trust ourselves wholly to His love.
cccThe nobleman wanted to see the fulfillment of his prayer before he should believe; but he had to accept the word of Jesus that his request was heard and the blessing granted. This lesson we also have to learn. Not because we see or feel that God hears us are we to believe. We are to trust in His promises. When we come to Him in faith, every petition enters the heart of God. When we have asked for His blessing, we should believe that we receive it, and thank Him that we have received it. Then we are to go about our duties, assured that the blessing will be realized when we need it most. When we have learned to do this, we shall know that our prayers are answered. God will do for us 'exceeding abundantly,' 'according to the riches of His glory,' and 'the working of His mighty power.' Eph. 3:20, 16; 1:19. DA 200.
cccThe sick man was lying on his mat, and occasionally lifting his head to gaze at the pool, when a tender, compassionate face bent over him, and the words, 'Wilt thou be made whole?' arrested his attention. Hope came to his heart. He felt that in some way he was to have help. But the glow of encouragement soon faded. He remembered how often he had tried to reach the pool, and now he had little prospect of living till it should again be troubled. He turned away wearily, saying, 'Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool: but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me.'
cccJesus does not ask this sufferer to exercise faith in Him. He simply says, 'Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.' But the man's faith takes hold upon that word. Every nerve and muscle thrills with new life, and healthful action comes to his crippled limbs. Without question he sets his will to obey the command of Christ, and all his muscles respond to his will. Springing to his feet, he finds himself an active man.
cccJesus had given him no assurance of divine help. The man might have stopped to doubt, and lost his one chance of healing. But he believed Christ's word, and in acting upon it he received strength.
cccThrough the same faith we may receive spiritual healing. By sin we have been severed from the life of God. Our souls are palsied. Of ourselves we are no more capable of living a holy life than was the impotent man capable of walking. There are many who realize their helplessness, and who long for that spiritual life which will bring them into harmony with God; they are vainly striving to obtain it. In despair they cry, 'O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from this body of death?' Rom. 7:24, margin. Let these desponding, struggling ones look up. The Saviour is bending over the purchase of His blood, saying with inexpressible tenderness and pity, 'Wilt thou be made whole?' He bids you arise in health and peace. Do not wait to feel that you are made whole. Believe His word, and it will be fulfilled. Put your will on the side of Christ. Will to serve Him, and in acting upon His word you will receive strength. Whatever may be the evil practice, the master passion which through long indulgence binds both soul and body, Christ is able and longs to deliver. He will impart life to the soul that is 'dead in trespasses.' Eph. 2:1. He will set free the captive that is held by weakness and misfortune and the chains of sin. DA 202-203.
cccHis quiet and simple life, and even the silence of the Scriptures concerning His early years, teach an important lesson. The more quiet and simple the life of the child,--the more free from artificial excitement, and the more in harmony with nature,--the more favorable is it to physical and mental vigor and to spiritual strength. DA 74.
cccThe religion that comes from God is the only religion that will lead to God. In order to serve Him aright, we must be born of the divine Spirit. This will purify the heart and renew the mind, giving us a new capacity for knowing and loving God. It will give us a willing obedience to all His requirements. This is true worship. It is the fruit of the working of the Holy Spirit. By the Spirit every sincere prayer is indited, and such prayer is acceptable to God. Wherever a soul reaches out after God, there the Spirit's working is manifest, and God will reveal Himself to that soul. For such worshipers He is seeking. He waits to receive them, and to make them His sons and daughters. DA 189.
cccOur infirmities may be many, our sins and mistakes grievous; but the grace of God is for all who seek it with contrition [i.e., with genuine sorrow for sin]. DA 352.
cccIt is Satan's work to fill men's hearts with doubt. He leads them to look upon God as a stern Judge. He tempts them to sin, and then to regard themselves as too vile to approach their heavenly Father or to excite His pity. The Lord understands all this. Jesus assures His disciples of God's sympathy for them in their needs and weaknesses. Not a sigh is breathed, not a pain felt, not a grief pierces the soul, but the throb vibrates to the Father's heart.
cccThe Bible shows us God in His high and holy place, not in a state of inactivity, not in silence and solitude, but surrounded by ten thousand times ten thousand and thousands of thousands of holy intelligences, all waiting to do His will. Through channels which we cannot discern He is in active communication with every part of His dominion. But it is in this speck of a world, in the souls that He gave His only-begotten Son to save, that His interest and the interest of all heaven is centered. God is bending from His throne to hear the cry of the oppressed. To every sincere prayer He answers, 'Here am I.' He uplifts the distressed and downtrodden. In all our afflictions He is afflicted. In every temptation and every trial the angel of His presence is near to deliver.
cccNot even a sparrow falls to the ground without the Father's notice. Satan's hatred against God leads him to hate every object of the Saviour's care. He seeks to mar the handiwork of God, and he delights in destroying even the dumb creatures. It is only through God's protecting care that the birds are preserved to gladden us with their songs of joy. But He does not forget even the sparrows. 'Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.'
cccJesus continues: As you confess Me before men, so I will confess you before God and the holy angels. You are to be My witnesses upon earth, channels through which My grace can flow for the healing of the world. So I will be your representative in heaven. The Father beholds not your faulty character, but He sees you as clothed in My perfection. I am the medium through which Heaven's blessings shall come to you. And everyone who confesses Me by sharing My sacrifice for the lost shall be confessed as a sharer in the glory and joy of the redeemed. DA 356-357.
cccChrist's toiling, struggling ones on earth are 'accepted in the Beloved.' Eph. 1:6. Before the heavenly angels and the representatives of unfallen worlds, they are declared justified. Where He is, there His church shall be. DA 834.
cccYou must not be discouraged, even if you have days of suffering and pain and weariness. . . .
ccc. . . . I tried to speak to the people a short time. I told them that it is the privilege of the Christian to come to Jesus in living faith, being in earnest, claiming the promises of God, not depending upon feeling, but taking God at His word. He is a God of love, of tender compassion, of long forbearance, more kind, more beneficent that the kindest earthly parent. UL 193; or Letter 37, June 28, 1878.
cccJesus is our example. There are many who dwell with interest upon the period of His public ministry, while they pass unnoticed the teaching of His early years. But it is in His home life that He is the pattern for all children and youth. The Saviour condescended to poverty, that He might teach how closely we in a humble lot may walk with God. He lived to please, honor, and glorify His Father in the common things of life. His work began in consecrating the lowly trade of the craftsmen who toil for their daily bread. He was doing God's service just as much when laboring at the carpenter's bench as when working miracles for the multitude. And every youth who follows Christ's example of faithfulness and obedience in His lowly home may claim those words spoken of Him by the Father through the Holy Spirit, 'Behold My Servant, whom I uphold; Mine Elect, in whom My soul delighteth.' Isa. 42:1. DA 74.
ccc'Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.'
cccThese words of comfort were spoken to the multitude that followed Jesus. The Saviour had said that only through Himself could men receive a knowledge of God. He had spoken of His disciples as the ones to whom a knowledge of heavenly things had been given. But He left none to feel themselves shut out from His care and love. All who labor and are heavy-laden may come unto Him.
cccJesus looked upon the distressed and heart burdened, those whose hopes were blighted, and who with earthly joys were seeking to quiet the longing of the soul, and He invited all to find rest in Him.
cccTenderly He bade the toiling people, 'Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.'
cccIn these words Christ is speaking to every human being. Whether they know it or not, all are weary and heavy-laden. All are weighed down with burdens that only Christ can remove. The heaviest burden that we bear is the burden of sin. If we were left to bear this burden, it would crush us. But the Sinless One has taken our place. 'The Lord hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all.' Isa. 53:6. He has borne the burden of our guilt. He will take the load from our weary shoulders. He will give us rest. The burden of care and sorrow also He will bear. He invites us to cast all our care upon Him; for He carries us upon His heart.
cccThe Elder Brother of our race is by the eternal throne. He looks upon every soul who is turning his face toward Him as the Saviour. He knows by experience what are the weaknesses of humanity, what are our wants, and where lies the strength of our temptations; for He was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. He is watching over you, trembling child of God. Are you tempted? He will deliver. Are you weak? He will strengthen. Are you ignorant? He will enlighten. Are you wounded? He will heal. The Lord 'telleth the number of the stars;' and yet 'He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds.' Ps. 147:4, 3. 'Come unto Me,' is His invitation. Whatever your anxieties and trials, spread out your case before the Lord. Your spirit will be braced for endurance. The way will be opened for you to disentangle yourself from embarrassment and difficulty. The weaker and more helpless you know yourself to be, the stronger will you become in His strength. The heavier your burdens, the more blessed the rest in casting them upon the Burden Bearer. The rest that Christ offers depends upon conditions, but these conditions are plainly specified. They are those with which all can comply. He tells us just how His rest is to be found.
ccc'Take My yoke upon you,' Jesus says. The yoke is an instrument of service. Cattle are yoked for labor, and the yoke is essential that they may labor effectually. By this illustration Christ teaches us that we are called to service as long as life shall last. We are to take upon us His yoke, that we may be co-workers with Him.
cccThe yoke that binds to service is the law of God. The great law of love revealed in Eden, proclaimed upon Sinai, and in the new covenant written in the heart, is that which binds the human worker to the will of God. If we were left to follow our own inclinations, to go just where our will would lead us, we should fall into Satan's ranks and become possessors of his attributes. Therefore God confines us to His will, which is high, and noble, and elevating. He desires that we shall patiently and wisely take up the duties of service. The yoke of service Christ Himself has borne in humanity. He said, 'I delight to do Thy will, O My God: yea, Thy law is within My heart.' Ps. 40:8. 'I came down 330 from heaven, not to do Mine own will, but the will of Him that sent Me.' John 6:38. Love for God, zeal for His glory, and love for fallen humanity, brought Jesus to earth to suffer and to die. This was the controlling power of His life. This principle He bids us adopt.
cccThere are many whose hearts are aching under a load of care because they seek to reach the world's standard. They have chosen its service, accepted its perplexities, adopted its customs. Thus their character is marred, and their life made a weariness. In order to gratify ambition and worldly desires, they wound the conscience, and bring upon themselves an additional burden of remorse. The continual worry is wearing out the life forces. Our Lord desires them to lay aside this yoke of bondage. He invites them to accept His yoke; He says, 'My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.' He bids them seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and His promise is that all things needful to them for this life shall be added. Worry is blind, and cannot discern the future; but Jesus sees the end from the beginning. In every difficulty He has His way prepared to bring relief. Our heavenly Father has a thousand ways to provide for us, of which we know nothing. Those who accept the one principle of making the service and honor of God supreme will find perplexities vanish, and a plain path before their feet.
ccc'Learn of Me,' says Jesus; 'for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest.' We are to enter the school of Christ, to learn from Him meekness and lowliness. Redemption is that process by which the soul is trained for heaven. This training means a knowledge of Christ. It means emancipation from ideas, habits, and practices that have been gained in the school of the prince of darkness. The soul must be delivered from all that is opposed to loyalty to God.
cccIn the heart of Christ, where reigned perfect harmony with God, there was perfect peace. He was never elated by applause, nor dejected by censure or disappointment. Amid the greatest opposition and the most cruel treatment, He was still of good courage. But many who profess to be His followers have an anxious, troubled heart, because they are afraid to trust themselves with God. They do not make a complete surrender to Him; for they shrink from the consequences that such a surrender may involve. Unless they do make this surrender, they cannot find peace.
cccIt is the love of self that brings unrest. When we are born from above, the same mind will be in us that was in Jesus, the mind that led Him to humble Himself that we might be saved. Then we shall not be seeking the highest place. We shall desire to sit at the feet of Jesus, and learn of Him. We shall understand that the value of our work does not consist in making a show and noise in the world, and in being active and zealous in our own strength. The value of our work is in proportion to the impartation of the Holy Spirit. Trust in God brings holier qualities of mind, so that in patience we may possess our souls.
cccThe yoke is placed upon the oxen to aid them in drawing the load, to lighten the burden. So with the yoke of Christ. When our will is swallowed up in the will of God, and we use His gifts to bless others, we shall find life's burden light. He who walks in the way of God's commandments is walking in company with Christ, and in His love the heart is at rest. When Moses prayed, 'Show me now Thy way, that I may know Thee,' the Lord answered him, 'My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest.' And through the prophets the message was given, 'Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls.' Ex. 33:13, 14; Jer. 6:16. And He says, 'O that thou hadst hearkened to My commandments! then had thy peace been as a river, and thy righteousness as the waves of the sea.' Isa. 48:18.
cccThose who take Christ at His word, and surrender their souls to His keeping, their lives to His ordering, will find peace and quietude. Nothing of the world can make them sad when Jesus makes them glad by His presence. In perfect acquiescence there is perfect rest. The Lord says, 'Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth in Thee.' Isa. 26:3. Our lives may seem a tangle; but as we commit ourselves to the wise Master Worker, He will bring out the pattern of life and character that will be to His own glory. And that character which expresses the glory--character--of Christ will be received into the Paradise of God. A renovated race shall walk with Him in white, for they are worthy.
cccAs through Jesus we enter into rest, heaven begins here. We respond to His invitation, Come, learn of Me, and in thus coming we begin the life eternal. Heaven is a ceaseless approaching to God through Christ. The longer we are in the heaven of bliss, the more and still more of glory will be opened to us; and the more we know of God, the more intense will be our happiness. As we walk with Jesus in this life, we may be filled with His love, satisfied with His presence. All that human nature can bear, we may receive here. But what is this compared with the hereafter? There 'are they before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple: and He that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them. They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.' Rev. 7:15-17. DA 328-332.
cccAnd thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left. Isaiah 30:21.
cccOn the cross of Calvary, He died a death of shame, that He might make an atonement for the sins of those who receive Him as their Saviour. To those who receive Him, and believe on Him, He promises to give power to become the sons of God.
cccJesus loves you. He has purchased you with His blood. Had He not loved you, He would not have died for you. His heart of love is grieved when you work contrary to Him, because you are thwarting His plan for your salvation. God cannot bless those who oppose Him, those who refuse to accept the words of comfort and peace that would bring light and love to their souls.
cccTo every man is given his work. Those who are connected with God will reveal their connection by working with Him. They are co-partners with God and with Christ. They are joint-heirs with Christ to an immortal inheritance.
cccIf in this world we do our best, following our divine Example, overcoming in the strength that He gives, we shall be granted an abundant entrance into the courts above. There Christ will lead us by rivers of living water and teach us the meaning of the providences that in this world we did not understand. Then we shall be able to discern the love of God in what now seem to us adversities. We shall see that trials were permitted to come to us to remove our un-Christlike traits of character, and to strengthen our weak points. UL 179; or MS 114, June 14, 1903.
cccThe Lord in His providence had brought . . . trial upon Abraham to teach him lessons of submission, patience, and faith--lessons that were to be placed on record for the benefit of all who should afterward be called to endure affliction. God leads His children by a way that they know not, but He does not forget or cast off those who put their trust in Him. He permitted affliction to come upon Job, but He did not forsake him. He allowed the beloved John to be exiled to lonely Patmos, but the Son of God met him there, and his vision was filled with scenes of immortal glory. God permits trials to assail His people, that by their constancy and obedience they themselves may be spiritually enriched, and that their example may be a source of strength to others. 'I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil.' Jeremiah 29:11. The very trials that task our faith most severely and make it seem that God has forsaken us, are to lead us closer to Christ, that we may lay all our burdens at His feet and experience the peace which He will give us in exchange.
cccGod has always tried His people in the furnace of affliction. It is in the heat of the furnace that the dross is separated from the true gold of the Christian character. Jesus watches the test; He knows what is needed to purify the precious metal, that it may reflect the radiance of His love. It is by close, testing trials that God disciplines His servants. He sees that some have powers which may be used in the advancement of His work, and He puts these persons upon trial; in His providence He brings them into positions that test their character and reveal defects and weaknesses that have been hidden from their own knowledge. He gives them opportunity to correct these defects and to fit themselves for His service. He shows them their own weakness, and teaches them to lean upon Him; for He is their only help and safeguard. Thus His object is attained. They are educated, trained, and disciplined, prepared to fulfill the grand purpose for which their powers were given them. When God calls them to action, they are ready, and heavenly angels can unite with them in the work to be accomplished on the earth. . . .
ccc. . . . While Christ is dwelling in the heart it is impossible to conceal the light of His presence, or for that light to grow dim. On the contrary, it will grow brighter and brighter as day by day the mists of selfishness and sin that envelop the soul are dispelled by the bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness.
cccThe people of God are His representatives upon the earth, and He intends that they shall be lights in the moral darkness of this world. Scattered all over the country, in the towns, cities, and villages, they are God's witnesses, the channels through which He will communicate to an unbelieving world the knowledge of His will and the wonders of His grace. It is His plan that all who are partakers of the great salvation shall be missionaries for Him. PP 129-130, 134.
cccGod is our Father, and He will teach all who come to Him, realizing that their human wisdom is foolishness. As they take hold of His strength, and make peace with Him, living by His Word, He will unite His strength with their weakness, His knowledge with their ignorance, making them strong in Him. He will give them the care adapted to their necessities. Those who trust in Him as their Teacher will not stumble or fall. UL 183; or MS 88, June 18, 1902.
cccNo unpleasant words are spoken in heaven. There no unkind thoughts are cherished. There envy, evil surmising, hatred, and strife find no place. Perfect harmony pervades the heavenly courts.
cccWell does Satan know what heaven is, and what the influence of the angels is. His work is to bring into every family the cruel elements of self-will, harshness, selfishness. Thus he seeks to destroy the happiness of the family. He knows that the spirit governing in the home will be brought into the church.
cccLet the father and mother always be guarded in their words and actions. The husband is to treat his wife, the mother of his children, with due respect, and the wife is to love and reverence her husband. How can she do this if he treats her like a servant, to be dictated to, ordered about, scolded, found fault with before the children? He is forcing her to dislike him and even to hate him.
cccMay God help fathers and mothers to open the windows of the soul heavenward and let the sunshine of Christ into the homelife. Unless they do this, they will be surrounded by a mist and fog most injurious to spirituality.
cccFathers and mothers, bring sweetness and brightness and hopefulness into the lives of your children. Kindness and love will work wonders. UL 163; or MS 71, May 29, 1902.
ccc'We have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil; whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest forever after the order of Melchisedec' (Heb. 6:19, 20).
cccWe have every reason to trust in God, and to bring all our worries and anxieties to Jesus Christ, that we may become better acquainted with Him. It should not be a difficult thing to remember that the Lord Jesus is desirous that we should bring all our troubles and perplexities to Him. 'Take it to the Lord in prayer,' and then leave your perplexities and burdens with Him. How much happier we should be would we do this. You may come to Him as a child comes to his parents, saying, 'Here, Lord, I have carried my self as though I could save myself for a long time. My burdens are too heavy for me to carry longer. Thou canst bear them for me.' He says, 'I will take them. With everlasting kindness will I have mercy upon thee.'
cccThis love is [as] strong as it is tender. The love of Jesus is stronger than death, for He died to win your love, to have you lean upon Him fully and entirely, and to make you one with Him, mystically and eternally one. The love of Jesus is something expressed, more tender than even the love of a mother for her child. The most tender love we know is that of a mother for her child, but the love of Jesus exceeds this. She may change in her affection. Mothers may become unkind, but Jesus never, never will become unmindful or unkind, or cruel to His children.
cccThen never, never will we show distrust and want of faith. So strong is His love that it controls all the affections of His nature, and [He] employs all His vast resources to do His people good. His love is durable, without variableness or shadow of turning. Never let us dishonor God by trying so hard to keep ourselves, fixing our eyes upon ourselves, and keeping ourselves constantly in view.
cccLook unto Jesus who is the Author and Finisher of our faith. Let us not do as we have done, make ourselves miserable over some supposed future tomorrow's burden. Carry your duties of today cheerfully. Today's faith, today's trust in Jesus, we must have. Today I may look and live. Today I will put my trust in God. Today I will rest in quietude and peace kept by the power of God. Say, 'The Lord will be glorified by my being cheerful and happy in His assurance of His love--today.' UL 180; or Letter 48, June 15, 1896.
Your brother in Christ,
Pastor Michael O. Hodges
FORERUNNER, self-supporting ministries
Home church (since 1983)
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