Wednesday, July 26, 2006

The past in His light

I have had a time of searching out the past and have been blessed today by this portion of the devotional....provided today for His purpose for me. Testimony is unnecessary....see, I have never really given a "testimony" in any real manner....I struggle with the sharing of some of the more difficult periods....this devotion has comforted me today....where all of that the Lord has brought me to is all that matters...through the years...through the storms ....through the joys...this is where I am here today....standing in the presence of the Lord as He lives His life in and through me. He knows it all and provided Himself to help embrace each memory in light of what He has done in me, for His glory, alone. What a wondrous story, testimony it is when Jesus is shown as the impetus, the constant in all of it....bringing me here today. It is a long one (devotion that is), and sometimes it seems like this is a long life.... :) but definitely worth the read.

Deuteronomy 8:2 (KJV)
"And thou shalt remember all the way which the Lord they God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments or no.


Did you ever reflect that you are responsible for what you remember and for how you remember it, and that you are bound to train and educate your memory, not merely in the sense of cultivating it as a means of carrying intellectual treasures, but for a spiritual purpose? The one thing that all parts of our nature need is God and that is as true about our power of remembrance as it is about any other part of our being. The past is then hallowed, noble, and yields its highest results and most blessed fruits for us when we link it closely with Him, and see in it not only, nor so much, the play of our own faculties, whether we blame or approve ourselves, as rather see in it the great field in which God has brought Himself near to our experience, and has been regulating and shaping all that has befallen us. The one thing which will consecrate memory, deliver it from its errors and abuses, raise it to its highest and noblest power, is that it should be in touch with God, and that the past should be regarded by each of us as it is, in deed and in truth, one long period of what God has done for us.

We can see His presence more clearly when we look back over a long connected stretch of days, and when the excitement of feeling the agony or rapture has passed, than we could whilst they were hot, and life was all hurry and bustle. The men on the deck of a ship see the beauty of the city that they have left behind, better than when they were pressing through its narrow streets. And though the view from the far-off waters of the receding houses may be an illusion, our view of the past, if we see God brooding over it all, and working in it all, is no illusion. The meannesses are hidden, the narrow places are invisible, all the pain and suffering is quieted, and we are able to behold more truly than when we were in the midst of it, the bearing, the purpose, and the blessedness alike of our sorrows and of our joys.

Many of us are old enough to have had a great many mysteries of our early days cleared up. We have seen at least the beginnings of the harvest: which the ploughshare of sorrow and the winter winds were preparing for us, and for the rest we can trust.

Brethren, remember your mercies, remember your losses; and " for all the way by which the Lord our God has led us these many years in the wilderness," let us try to be thankful, including in our praises in the darkness and the storm as well as the light and the calm.

Some of us are like people who, when they get better of their sicknesses, grudge the doctor's bill. We forget the mercies as soon as they are past, because we only enjoyed the sensuous sweetness of them whilst it tickled our palate, and did not think, in the enjoyment of them, whose love it was that they spoke of to us. Sorrows and joys, bring them all in your thanksgivings, and "forget not the works of God."


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