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Trust In the Lord at All Hazards – by Charles Spurgeon
Beloved, if persecution or affliction should come it cannot really harm you. The three Hebrew children, when they came out of the fire, were not scorched or singed; there was not the smell of fire upon their hats, their hosen, or their hair. When God’s people pass through the fires of persecution, they shall not be losers; they shall go through the fires altogether unharmed; nay, they shall win the martyr’s palm and crown, which shall make them glorious forever, even if they die in the flames. Therefore, fear nothing. Nothing shall by any means harm you; in the end your sufferings shall be your enrichment. Though you count not your lives dear unto you, precious shall your blood be in his sight. Besides persecution, there may come to you accident or sudden calamity. Never be afraid. It is half the battle in an accident, to exhibit presence of mind, therefore let the child of God be calm and self-possessed; for although you should suffer in body, your true self will be safe. Though in the tornado, or in the shipwreck, or in cholera, or in fire, you should be placed in outward peril even as others are, yet your real life is insured by the covenant of grace from all injury. Therefore, rest in the Lord, for you shall be safe though a thousand should fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand. If you lose, your loss shall be transmuted into a real gain. Sickness, if sickness comes, shall work your health. God’s children have often been ripened by sickness. They are like the sycamore fig, which never gets sweet until it is bruised. Amos was a bruiser of sycamore figs, and affliction is God’s Amos to bruise us into sweetness. Maturity comes by affliction. Alas! you say, “I have lost a dear friend.” Trust in God, and by Divine friendship the void in your heart shall be more than filled. Have you lost a child? The Lord will be better to you than ten sons (1 Sam.1:8).. Should your father and your mother be taken from you, you shall find them both in Christ, and. be no orphan. Thus doth the promise stand: “No good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.” “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”Trust, then, in the Lord at all hazards. Trust in him in deep waters as well as on the shore. When the waves are raging, trust your God as well as when the sea is as glass. When the sea roars, and the mountains shake with the swelling thereof, trust in Jehovah without the shade of a doubt, for “the very hairs of your head are all numbered.” Wherefore should you fear? Your vessel carries Jesus and all his fortune. If you are drowned he cannot swim, he sinks or swims with you; for thus has he put it, “Because I live, ye shall live also.” If your Lord lives, you must live. Wherefore, comfort one another with these words, and go quietly, patiently, happily, joyfully through the world, under divine preservation, since “the very hairs of your head are all numbered.”
Six Signs of Trouble – by Henry Mahan
Every true believer fears the removal of God’s presence and power. David prayed, “Take not thy Spirit from me.”
Paul feared that, “while preaching to others, I might become a castaway.” My thoughts are that this condition is manifested in the following ways:
We begin to experience no blessing nor benefit from the reading or preaching of the Word. When the Word ceases to convict, rebuke, burn in my heart, and cause me to rejoice in Christ, then God is not speaking to me; for God speaks through his Word.
We are in trouble when we feel satisfied with our spiritual progress and become puffed up with knowledge. We become authorities instead of learners; having arrived, our humble spirit is in creed alone, not experience.
We can be absent from the fellowship of believers and worship of the Lord without feeling a great loss and an empty heart. A man who can be warmed by his own fire is either dead or dying spiritually.
We begin to be critics and find fault with others. The Spirit of God leads a man to feel that he is “less than the least,” “chief of sinners.” When the Spirit of God is not present, we become judges and fault-finders.
When our souls are not vexed by the sin within us and the conversation of men about us, when we can feel comfortable in the presence of those who never knew our God, when we can conform to the ways of natural men and the trend of materialism, the light of God is dim or extinguished.
When our thoughts become self-centered and the general welfare, well-being, and joy of others is of no great concern to us, we are certainly not motivated by the Spirit of God. Selfishness, like self-righteousness, is not of God. The heart filled with God’s love and grace dwells on others; to make them happy is to be happy.