I SHALL speak this morning to those that are discouraged, depressed in spirit, and sore troubled in the Christian life. There are certain nights of exceeding great darkness, through which the spirit has to grope in much pain and misery, and during which much of the comfort of the Word is particularly needed.
This much I know, if it be not so with all of you it is so with me. I have to speak to-day to myself; and whilst I shall be endeavoring to encourage those who are distressed and down-hearted, I shall be preaching, I trust, to myself, for I need something which shall cheer my heart why I cannot tell, wherefore I do not know, but I have a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to buffet me; my soul is cast down within me, I feel as if I had rather die than live; all that God hath done by me seems to be forgotten, and my spirit flags and my courage breaks down with the thought of that which is to come.
I need your prayers; I need Gods Holy Spirit; and I felt that I could not preach to-day, unless I should preach in such a way as to encourage you and to encourage myself in the good work and labor of the Lord Jesus Christ.
First, before we can do any great things for Christ there must be a sense of weakness. Secondly, there must be trust in promised strength; and thirdly, there must be fear removed by that promise: “Fear not, for I will help thee.”
Depend on this: God will empty out all that thou hast before he will ever put his own into thee.
Your emptiness is but the preparation for your being filled, and your casting down is but the making ready for your lifting up.
He that thinks, will always think himself little. Men who have no brains are always great men; but those who think, must think their pride down if God is with them in their thinking.
Give God to a man, and he can do all things. Put God into a mans arm, and he may have only the jawbone of an ass to fight with, but he will lay the Philistines in heaps: put God into a mans hand, and he may have a giant to deal with, and nothing but a sling and a stone; but he will lodge the stone in the giants brow before long; put God into a mans eye, and he will flash defiance on kings and princes; put God into a mans lip, and he will speak right honestly, though hie death should be the wages of his speech. There is no fear of a man who has got God with him; he is all-sufficient; there is nothing beyond his power.
Let us labor to get rid of fear, when we are certain we are serving our Master. And let these be our reasons: Get rid of fear, because fear is painful. How it torments the spirit! When the Christian trusts, he is happy; when he doubts, he is miserable. When the believer looks to his Master and relics upon him, he can sing; when he doubts his Master, he can only groan.
Fear, too, is weakening. Make a man afraid he will run at his own shadow; make a man brave, and he will stand before an army and overcome them.
© Becky Laney of Operation Actually Read Bible