Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Be Careful What You Pray For

In his book Scandalous: The Cross and Resurrection of Jesus, D.A. Carson shares this story, and how true it is:
     A friend of mine who was a pastor of a church was shaking hands at the door a number of years ago.  A woman shook his hand and said, "Pastor, pray for me that I might be given more patience."
     He replied, "I will pray that the Lord will send you a packet of trouble."
     She said, "That is exactly what I don't need.  I've already got trouble.  All I need is patience."
     "Well, if you want patience, I'll pray that the Lord will give you a packet of trouble" - because that is the way the Lord regularly does things.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Show Me The Sap!

In the book Soul Winner, Charles Spurgeon urges his hearers to remember the source of Christian life and work:
No truth ought to be remembered more than this:  "From me is thy fruit found" (Hosea 14:8).  We can bring forth no fruit except as we abide in Christ.  "The righteous shall flourish as a branch" (Proverbs 11:25), and only as a branch.  How does a branch flourish?  By its connection with the stem and the consequent inflowing of the sap...the fruit of righteousness would never come from him unless the divine sap within him had produced that acceptable fruit. To God alone be all honor and glory.