Today’s Scripture: “The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and He delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down for the Lord upholdeth him with His hand.”—Psalm 37:23-24.
IT IS a mistake to think of our Lord’s sufferings as a fact of history come and gone, an incident of the great past. It is this, but much more. He does not leave us to bear all the burden of life, unaided and alone. He shares everything with us now–our pain, our griefs, our weariness. “In all our affliction He is afflicted, and the Angel of His Presence saves us.” As another has put it: “Not standing over against me, holding back a hand that might help, but side by side; nay, even, ‘closer than breathing.’ Within the inmost hiding-place of my sufferings, He suffers also, bears my griefs and carries my sorrows, as though they were His own. If only we will avail ourselves of His sympathy and help, they who watch us shall see One like unto the Son of Man walking in the fiery furnace, by our side.”
God is ordering all things in our life to secure the best results here and hereafter. In the darkest sky there are a few inches of blue. Happy is the soul which watches these, and dwells on them, and believes that they will widen until the darkness is passed, and all the sky is clear! We often forget that what seems to be a disaster is really the seed of a joyous harvesting. If we had visited this earth of ours in one of the great eras of the past, we should have found it covered by a dense mass of vegetation. But that era was not destined to last. Volcanic action of the fiercest character overwhelmed those mighty trees, and hurled them into the dark caverns and cellars of the yawning gulfs which seamed the planet. You and I, had we been there, might have cried: “Wherefore this waste?” To our poor and limited vision, it would have seemed a contradiction to the ordered progress of the Creator’s plan. Why hurl into the bowels of the earth all this fair growth! But out of that cataclysm, the profuse vegetation, pressed together in the heart of the earth, became coal to give us light and heat.
Once, when staying in the country with a friend, he took me into his garden and showed me the weather-vane over his coach-house, and asked if I could distinguish the sentence woven into its texture. I discovered it to be: “God is Love!….Yes,” he said, “for I have found that whatever comes to me is from the quarter of the Love of God!”