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Encouragement and Exhortation in the Valley of Darkness

Discussion in 'Bible Readings, Reflections, & Devotions' started by mattfivefour, Mar 31, 2012.

  1. mattfivefour

    mattfivefour Well-Known Member

    Today, as I walked the ever deepening and darkening valley in which I find myself walking these days, I discovered this message. It was written more than a hundred years ago by a man who knew deep valleys. His name was Charles Haddon Spurgeon.

    I pray this exhortation is an encouragement to those of you who yourselves are walking in the midst of trials and tribulations.

    And Rizpah the daughter of Aiah took sackcloth, and spread it for her upon the rock, from the beginning of harvest until water dropped upon them out of heaven, and suffered neither the birds of the air to rest on them by day, nor the beasts of the field by night. (2 Samuel 21:10)

    If the love of a woman to her slain sons could make her prolong her mournful vigil for so long a period, shall we weary of considering the sufferings of our blessed Lord?

    She drove away the birds of prey, and shall not we chase from our meditations those worldly and sinful thoughts which defile both our minds and the sacred themes upon which we are occupied? Away, ye birds of evil wing! Leave ye the sacrifice alone! She bore the heats of summer, the night dews and the rains, unsheltered and alone. Sleep was chased from her weeping eyes: her heart was too full for slumber. Behold how she loved her children!

    Shall Rizpah thus endure, and shall we start at the first little inconvenience or trial? Are we such cowards that we cannot bear to suffer with our Lord? She chased away even the wild beasts, with courage unusual in her sex, and will not we be ready to encounter every foe for Jesus' sake?

    These her children were slain by other hands than hers, and yet she wept and watched: what ought we to do who have by our sins crucified our Lord? Our obligations are boundless, our love should be fervent and our repentance thorough. To watch with Jesus should be our business, to protect his honor our occupation, to abide by his cross our solace. Those ghastly corpses might well have affrighted Rizpah, especially by night, but in our Lord, at whose cross-foot we are sitting, there is nothing revolting, but everything attractive. Never was living beauty so enchanting as a dying Saviour.

    Jesus, we will watch with thee yet awhile, and do thou graciously unveil thyself to us; then shall we not sit beneath sackcloth, but in a royal pavilion.
  2. Meg

    Meg Well-Known Member

    I hope this helps somehow. It was written in honor of Nate Saint, Jim Elliot, Ed McCully, Roger Yonderian and Pete Fleming and their surviving wives and children.

  3. Meg

    Meg Well-Known Member

  4. mattfivefour

    mattfivefour Well-Known Member

    Yes, Lord:

    If You say go, we will go​
    If You say wait, we will wait​
    If You say step out on the water​
    And they say it can't be done​
    We'll fix our eyes on You and we will come​

    Your ways are higher than our ways​
    And the plans that You have laid​
    Are good and true​
    If You call us to the fire​
    You will not withdraw Your hand​
    We'll gaze into the flames and look for You​

    Thanks, Meg. :hug
  5. Meg

    Meg Well-Known Member

    These words have brought me to tears at times

    No, Adrian, He will not withdraw His hand. Sometimes He asks things of us that are very difficult, but He never asks lightly and He never leaves us to face it alone. Hang onto that and try to trust, no matter what. Tall order, I know, and Robert and I pray for you daily.
    :hug :hug :hug :hug :hug :hug :hug
  6. mattfivefour

    mattfivefour Well-Known Member

    And we pray for you both as well, sis. :hug :hug :hug :hug

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