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Posts Tagged ‘D. L. Moody’

There are no atheists in foxholes, the science lab, or the back pew.

There are no atheists anywhere.  Every one is a person of faith.

The scientist, the atheist, the egomaniac, and the Christian are all people of faith.  Everyone believes in something, even if that something is nothing.

Two variables distinguish people in faith

1.  The object of their faith.

2.  How their faith shows itself.

The scientist has faith in evolutionary theory, the atheist in the absence of truth, and the egomaniac in self.  None of which adequately explain the beautiful intricacies of creation, love, hate, suffering, sin, mercy, forgiveness, or ethics.  Neither do these three provide a basis for hope, which poets, philosophers, and psychologists say is essential to healthy living without the malaise of despair.

The Christian’s faith in God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit is the only faith that provides a full explanation of these realities and essentials for living.

The Christian faith is solid not because of the faith of the Christian, but because of the object of that faith.  As F. B. Meyer said, “The Christian leans not so much upon the promises as upon the Promiser.” (1)

The second variable that distinguish everyone in their faith is how do they show their faith.  Is there faith:

  • A static intellectual belief?
  • A life lived from heart-felt conviction?

To believe is different than to live what you believe.  There is an inherent foolishness in not staking your whole life on what you believe.

Martin Luther wrote:

How does your faith show itself ? Faith must never be useless, deaf, dead, or in a state of decay.  But it must be a living tree that bursts forth with fruit. That’s the difference between genuine faith and false faith.  Where there is true faith, it will show itself in a person’s life. (2)

Passive faith accepts the Word as true,

But never moves. 

Active faith begins the work to do, 

And thereby proves.

Passive faith but praises in the light, 

When sun does shine.

Active faith will praise in darkest night

Which faith is thine? (3)

+++

  1. Dwight Lyman Moody, Thoughts for the Quiet Hour (Willow Grove, PA: Woodlawn Electronic Publishing, 1998).
  2. Luther, Martin; Galvin, James C. (2009-05-19). Faith Alone: A Daily Devotional (p. 52). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.
  3. Reimann, Jim; Cowman, Mrs. Charles E. (2008-09-02). Streams in the Desert (p. 86). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.

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This is the day the Lord has made, 

let us rejoice and be glad in it.  

Psalm 118:24

How is it with your heart this morning? (1)

When I wake up my mind is either racing ahead through the day’s agenda or still in a daze wondering how the night slipped by so quickly.  I cannot remember ever assessing the state of my heart when the alarm goes off.

Would my day be any different, if I imagined God asking me this question when I arose, “Rus, how is it with your heart this morning?”

If I answered:

  • “Lord, my heart is anxious for the day …..
  • “Lord, my heart is weary from burdens ….
  • “Lord, my heart is troubled by yesterday’s news ….

Wouldn’t God respond with these words?

  • “Seek me first …
  • “Come to me all you who are weary ….
  • “Be still and know that I am God ….

I believe He would.

His words, His presence, His compassion would fill my heart.  Then my day would be different because it began with words from my Lord.

Joseph Parker once wrote, “The face is made every day by its morning prayer.” (2)

—-

(1) Charles H. Spurgeon, Morning and Evening. (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers, 2006).
(2) Samuel G. Hardman and Dwight Lyman Moody, Thoughts for the Quiet Hour (Willow Grove, PA: Woodlawn Electronic Publishing, 1998).

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I pray that you, being rooted and established in love

may grasp the love of Christ. 

Ephesians 3:17, 18

Love is the very heart and essence of God, not only for the lovely but for the vilest of sinners.  If the New Testament teaches us anything, it teaches us about God’s love in searching for lost men.

As we mature in the Christian faith, we begin to realize that every situation that comes our way is an opportunity for God’s love to be made more evident in our lives.

Kenneth W. Osbeck, Amazing Grace : 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Kregel Publications, 1990), 44.

God’s Redemptive Love vs Moral Love

When a merely moral man or woman comes in contact with baseness and immorality and treachery, the recoil is so desperately offensive to human goodness that the heart shuts up in despair. The marvel of the Redemptive Reality of God is that the worst and the vilest can never get to the bottom of His love.

Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest : Selections for the Year (Grand Rapids, MI: Discovery House Publishers, 1993).

The Soul where Love Reigns

God’s love … causes us to act in respect to God continually, without hesitation, straight forward, without reflections; and supremely, without complicated intentions, motives or designs with a single eye to the good pleasure of God.

Love …  towards a neighbor, is to act with frankness, without affectation; with sincerity without disguise, and with liberty, without constraint. As an infant loves mother.

Hannah Whitall Smith and Melvin Easterday Dieter, The Christian’s Secret of a Holy Life : The Unpublished Personal Writings of Hannah Whitall Smith (Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1997).

Love the World, for God

Love the world to do it good, giving your tears to its sufferings, your pity to its sorrows, your wealth to its wants, your prayers to its miseries, and to its fields of charity, and philanthropy, and Christian piety, your powers and hours of labor. You cannot live without affecting it, or being affected by it. You will make the world better, or it will make you worse.

God help you by His grace and Holy Spirit so to live in the world as to live above it, and look beyond it; and so to love it that when you leave it, you may leave it better than you found it.

Samuel G. Hardman and Dwight Lyman Moody, Thoughts for the Quiet Hour (Willow Grove, PA: Woodlawn Electronic Publishing, 1998).

My Debt of Love is Paid from the Paid Debt of  My Sin

I am a debtor to God’s grace and forgiving mercy; but I am no debtor to his justice, for he will never accuse me of a debt already paid.

Christ, to the uttermost, has satisfied divine justice; the account is settled; the handwriting is nailed to the cross; the receipt is given, and we are debtors to God’s justice no longer.

Because we are not debtors to our Lord in that sense, we become ten times more debtors to God than we should have been otherwise. Thou art as deep in debt as thou canst be to every attribute of God. To God thou owest thyself, and all thou hast—yield thyself as a living sacrifice, it is but thy reasonable service.

Charles H. Spurgeon, Morning and Evening : Daily Readings, Complete and unabridged; New modern edition. (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers, 2006).

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Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen. 

2 Peter 3:18

My child, I have a message for you today. Let me whisper it in your ear so any storm clouds that may arise will shine with glory, and the rough places you may have to walk will be made smooth. It is only four words, but let them sink into your inner being, and use them as a pillow to rest your weary head. “This is my doing.” (1 Kings 12:24)  (For further reflection on this quote click here.)

Reimann, Jim; Cowman, Mrs. Charles E. (2008-09-02).

Streams in the Desert: 366 Daily Devotional Readings (p. 56).

Zondervan. Kindle Edition.

Follow me one step at a time. That is all I require of you. In fact, that is the only way to move through this space/time world.  Keep your mind on the present journey, enjoying My Presence. Walk by faith, not by sight, trusting Me to open up the way before you.

Young, Sarah (2004-10-12).

Jesus Calling: Seeking Peace in His Presence (p. 34).

Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition.

Spurgeon writes: “A prayerless soul is a Christless soul. Prayer is the lisping of the believing infant, the shout of the fighting believer, the requiem of the dying saint falling asleep in Jesus.”

Dwight Lyman Moody,

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour

(Willow Grove, PA: Woodlawn Electronic Publishing, 1998).

A life devoid of Christ’s tender love for others, both fellow-believers and non-believers, can negate much of our Christian witness. Consciously leave time in your schedule to be responsive to the needs of another. Share Christ and His love with them.

Kenneth W. Osbeck,

Amazing Grace : 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions

(Grand Rapids, Mich.: Kregel Publications, 1990), 42.

Swimming lessons are better than a lifeline to the shore.  (For further reflection on this quote click here)

Lewis, C. S. (2009-03-17).

A Year with C. S. Lewis (p. 37).

Harper Collins, Inc.. Kindle Edition.

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The service of Christ is the business of my life.

The will of Christ is the law of my life.

The presence of Christ is the joy of my life.

The glory of Christ is the crown of my life.

Samuel G. Hardman and Dwight Lyman Moody,

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour

(Willow Grove, PA: Woodlawn Electronic Publishing, 1998).

The first thing you do after God speaks to you is critical. … Rather than responding to what Jesus told him, Peter looked around at his fellow disciples. His glance fell upon John, the disciple whom Jesus loved. “But Lord, what about this man?” Peter asked. … How natural to compare his assignment with that of the others! This is the great temptation of God’s servants: to compare our situation with that of others. … Jesus assigned Peter and John to walk two different paths, but both Peter and John have enriched our lives.

Blackaby, Richard (2006-12-01).

Experiencing God Day By Day (p. 31).

B&H Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

When faithful people are happy and when they sing, “The LORD is my strength and my song” (Psalm 118:14), the devil stays far away from them.  But as soon as we stop praising God, miserable, lonely, sad thoughts return.  This is how the devil works. When the water becomes troubled, he likes to fish. He uses these opportunities to tempt people to abandon their faith and give up in despair.

Luther, Martin; Galvin, James C. (2009-05-19).

Faith Alone: A Daily Devotional (p. 31).

Zondervan. Kindle Edition.

I am your strength and your shield. I plan out each day and have it ready for you, long before you arise from bed. I also provide the strength you need each step of the way. Instead of assessing your energy level and wondering about what’s on the road ahead, concentrate on staying in touch with Me.

Young, Sarah (2004-10-12).

Jesus Calling: Seeking Peace in His Presence (p. 32).

Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition.

He gives quietness in the midst of the raging storm.  He gives quietness even in the midst of losing our inner strength and comforts. Sometimes He removes these because we make too much of them. We are tempted to look at our joys, pleasures, passions, or our dreams, with too much self-satisfaction.

Reimann, Jim; Cowman, Mrs. Charles E. (2008-09-02).

Streams in the Desert: 366 Daily Devotional Readings (p. 55).

Zondervan. Kindle Edition.

Looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. (Hebrews 12:2)

The Holy Bible: English Standard Version

(Wheaton: Standard Bible Society, 2001).

The one thing that is all important is that the Gospel of God should be realized as the abiding Reality. Reality is not human goodness, nor holiness, nor heaven, nor hell, but Redemption; and the need to perceive this is the most vital need of the Christian worker to-day. … Personal holiness is an effect, not a cause, and if we place our faith in human goodness, in the effect of Redemption, we shall go under when the test comes.

Oswald Chambers,

My Utmost for His Highest : Selections for the Year

(Grand Rapids, MI: Discovery House Publishers, 1993).

How often are the saints of God downcast and sad! I do not think they ought to be. I do not think they would if they could always see their perfection in Christ. There are some who are always talking about corruption, and the depravity of the heart, and the innate evil of the soul. This is quite true, but why not go a little further, and remember that we are “perfect in Christ Jesus.” … On the cross he said, “It is finished!” and if it be finished, then am I complete in him, and can rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.

Charles H. Spurgeon,

Morning and Evening : Daily Readings

(Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers, 2006).

In our fast-paced daily life, how easy it is to get caught up in the “things of earth” so that eternal values become blurred and almost forgotten. … Remember these words from the chorus of Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus, … “Turn your eyes upon Jesus; look full in His wonderful face, and the things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace.”

Kenneth W. Osbeck,

Amazing Grace : 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions

(Grand Rapids, Mich.: Kregel Publications, 1990), 40.

This is my endlessly recurrent temptation: to go down to that Sea (I think St. John of the Cross called God a sea) and there neither dive nor swim nor float, but only dabble and splash, careful not to get out of my depth and holding on to the lifeline which connects me with my things temporal.  (For further reflection on this quote click here)

Lewis, C. S. (2009-03-17).

A Year with C. S. Lewis (p. 36).

Harper Collins, Inc.. Kindle Edition.

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Do you recognize the folly of a servant of God attempting to minister without eating of the heavenly manna? Neither is it sufficient to have spiritual nourishment only occasionally. Every day you must receive the “renewal by the Holy Spirit.” You know the difference between your whole being pulsating with the energy and freshness of God’s divine life or feeling worn-out and weary. Quietness and stillness bring the dew  Wait before God until you feel saturated with His presence.  Dew will never appear while there is either heat or wind. The temperature must fall, the wind cease, and the air come to a point of coolness and rest—absolute rest—before the invisible particles of moisture will become dew to dampen any plant or flower. And the grace of God does not come forth to bring rest and renewal to our soul until we completely reach the point of stillness before Him.

From Reimann, Jim; Cowman, Mrs. Charles E. (2008-09-02). Streams in the Desert: 366 Daily Devotional Readings (pp. 54-55). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.

Besides being complicated, reality, in my experience, is usually odd.  Reality, in fact, is usually something you could not have guessed. That is one of the reasons I believe Christianity. It is a religion you could not have guessed. If it offered us just the kind of universe we had always expected, I should feel we were making it up. But, in fact, it is not the sort of thing anyone would have made up. It has just that queer twist about it that real things have.

From Lewis, C. S. (2009-03-17). A Year with C. S. Lewis (p. 27). Harper Collins, Inc.. Kindle Edition.

Even the best Christian that ever lived is not acting on his own steam—he is only nourishing or protecting a life he could never have acquired by his own efforts.

From Lewis, C. S. (2009-03-17). A Year with C. S. Lewis (p. 29). Harper Collins, Inc.. Kindle Edition.

A moderated religion is as good for us as no religion at all—and more amusing.

From Lewis, C. S. (2009-03-17). A Year with C. S. Lewis (p. 30). Harper Collins, Inc.. Kindle Edition.

“He is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel. For I will show him how many things he must suffer for My name’s sake” (Acts 9:15–16). God’s plan for Paul, revealed through a vision, involved both testifying before kings and suffering persecution. Paul was to enjoy the thrill of performing miracles, preaching to large crowds, and starting churches. But Paul was also to be stoned, shipwrecked, whipped, mocked, conspired against, and imprisoned (2 Cor. 11:23–28).

From Blackaby, Richard (2006-12-01). Experiencing God Day By Day (p. 30). B&H Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

When children are old enough to begin grasping the concepts of faith, they should make a habit of bringing home verses of Scripture from church. They should recite these verses to their parents at mealtime. Then they should write the verses down and put them in little pouches or pockets.

From Luther, Martin; Galvin, James C. (2009-05-19). Faith Alone: A Daily Devotional (p. 30). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.

As it is now, people go to hear a sermon and leave again unchanged. They act like a sermon is only worth the time it takes to hear it. No one thinks about learning anything from it or remembering it. Some people listen to sermons for three or four years and still don’t learn enough to respond to a single question about faith. More than enough has been written in books, but not nearly enough has been driven into our hearts.

From Luther, Martin; Galvin, James C. (2009-05-19). Faith Alone: A Daily Devotional (p. 30). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.

Whatever occupies your mind the most becomes your god.

From Young, Sarah (2004-10-12). Jesus Calling: Seeking Peace in His Presence (p. 31). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition.

Get into the habit of saying, “Speak, Lord,” and life will become a romance.

Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest : Selections for the Year (Grand Rapids, MI: Discovery House Publishers, 1993).

God never gives us a call without its being a privilege, and He never gives us the privilege to come up higher without stretching out to us His hand to lift us up.

Samuel G. Hardman and Dwight Lyman Moody, Thoughts for the Quiet Hour (Willow Grove, PA: Woodlawn Electronic Publishing, 1998).


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