“…for them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed”
1 Samuel 2:30
“Do I make the honour of God the great object of my life and the rule of my conduct? If so, He will honour me. I may for awhile receive no honour from man, but God will Himself put honour upon me in the most effectual manner. In the end it will be found the surest way to honour to be willing to be put to shame for conscience sake.
Eli had not honoured the Lord by ruling his household well, and his sons had not honoured the Lord by behaviour worthy of their sacred office, and therefore the Lord did not honour them, but took the high-priesthood out of their family, and made young Samuel to be ruler in the land instead of any of their line. If I would have my family ennobled, I must honour the Lord in all things. God may allow the wicked to win worldly honours; but the dignity which He Himself gives, even glory, honour, and immortality, He reserves for those who by holy obedience take care to honour Him.
What can I do this day to honour the Lord? I will promote His glory by my spoken testimony, and by my practical obedience…”
– Charles Spurgeon
“Peter began to say to Him, ‘See, we have left all and followed You”
“Our Lord replies to this statement of Peter by saying that this surrender is “for My sake and the gospel’s” (Mark 10:29). It was not for the purpose of what the disciples themselves would get out of it. Beware of surrender that is motivated by personal benefits that may result. For example, “I’m going to give myself to God because I want to be delivered from sin, because I want to be made holy.” Being delivered from sin and being made holy are the result of being right with God, but surrender resulting from this kind of thinking is certainly not the true nature of Christianity. Our motive for surrender should not be for any personal gain at all. We have become so self-centered that we go to God only for something from Him, and not for God Himself. It is like saying, “No, Lord, I don’t want you; I want myself. But I do want You to clean me and fill me with Your Holy Spirit. I want to be on display in Your showcase so I can say, ‘This is what God has done for me.’ ” Gaining heaven, being delivered from sin, and being made useful to God are things that should never even be a consideration in real surrender. Genuine total surrender is a personal sovereign preference for Jesus Christ Himself.
Where does Jesus Christ figure in when we have a concern about our natural relationships? Most of us will desert Him with this excuse— “Yes, Lord, I heard you call me, but my family needs me and I have my own interests. I just can’t go any further” (see Luke 9:57-62). “Then,” Jesus says, “you ‘cannot be My disciple’ ” (see Luke 14:26-33).
True surrender will always go beyond natural devotion. If we will only give up, God will surrender Himself to embrace all those around us and will meet their needs, which were created by our surrender. Beware of stopping anywhere short of total surrender to God. Most of us have only a vision of what this really means, but have never truly experienced it”
– Oswald Chambers
“Those who know your name will trust in You, for You, have never forsaken those who seek you”
“Persistent prayer in the earnest, inward movement of the heart toward God. Isaiah lamented that no one stirred himself to take hold of God. There was much praying in Isaiah’s time, but it was indifferent and self-righteous.
There were no mighty moves of souls toward God. There was no array of sanctified energies bent on reaching God. There was no energy to draw the treasures of His grace from Him.
Forceless prayers have no power to overcome difficulties, get results, or gain complete victories. We must win God before we can win our plea.”
“And there is none that calleth upon thy name, that stirreth up himself to take hold of thee: for thou hast hid thy face from us, and hast consumed us, because of our iniquities”
“Now, as I went towards Nottingham, on a Firstday, in the morning, going with Friends to a meeting there, when I came on the top of a hill in sight of the town, I espied the great steeple-house. And the Lord said unto me, ‘Thou must go cry against yonder great idol, and against the worshippers therein.’
“I said nothing of this to the Friends that were with me, but went on with them to the meeting, where the mighty power of the Lord was amongst us; in which I left Friends sitting in the meeting, and went away to the steeple-house. When I came there, all the people looked like fallow ground; and the priest (like a great lump of earth) stood in his pulpit above.
“He took for his text these words of Peter, ‘We have also a more sure Word of prophecy, whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day-star arise in your hearts.’ And he told the people that this was the Scriptures, by which they were to try all doctrines, religions, and opinions.
“Now the Lord’s power was so mighty upon me, and so strong in me, that I could not hold, but was made to cry out and say, ‘Oh, no; it is not the Scriptures!’ and I told them what it was, namely, the Holy Spirit, by which the holy men of God gave forth the Scriptures, whereby opinions, religions, and judgments were to be tried; for it led into all truth, and so gave the knowledge of all truth. The Jews had the Scriptures, and yet resisted the Holy Ghost, and rejected Christ, the bright morning star. They persecuted Christ and His apostles, and took upon them to try their doctrines by the Scriptures; but they erred in judgment, and did not try them aright, because they tried without the Holy Ghost. . “As I spoke thus amongst them, the officers came and took me away, and put me into a nasty, stinking prison; the smell whereof got so into my nose and throat that it very much annoyed me.
“But that day the Lord’s power sounded so in their ears that they were amazed at the voice, and could not get it out of their ears for some time after, they were so reached by the Lord’s power in the steeple-house. At night they took me before the mayor, aldermen, and sheriffs of the town; and when I was brought before them, the mayor was in a peevish, fretful temper, but the Lord’s power allayed him. They examined me at large; and I told them how the Lord had moved me to come. After some discourse between them and me, they sent me back to prison again. Some time after, the head sheriff, whose name was John Reckless, sent for me to his house. When I came in, his wife met me in the hall, and said, ‘Salvation is come to our house.’ She took me by the hand, and was much wrought upon by the power of the Lord God; and her husband, and children, and servants were much changed, for the power of the Lord wrought upon them.
“I lodged at the sheriff’s, and great meetings we had in his house. Some persons of considerable condition in the world came to them, and the Lord’s power appeared eminently amongst them.”
– George Fox
(Reblogged from Tim Shey’s Website)
“Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world”
1 John 4:1
“The pursuit of holiness is a joint venture between God and the Christian. No one can attain any degree of holiness without God working in his life, but just as surely no one will attain it without effort on his own part”
– Jerry Bridges
“Our confidence in Christ does not make us lazy, negligent, or careless, but on the contrary it awakens us, urges us on, and makes us active in living righteous lives and doing good. There is no self-confidence to compare with this”
– Huldrych (Ulrich) Zwingli
In every awakening, there is someone who prepares their heart and desires that others do the same. The element of heart preparation is crucial to any move of God.
A mid-century example is found in the Awakening which took place on the Ile of Lewis in 1949.
When Christine and Peggy (elderly Presbyterians in the 1950’s) began praying for a sovereign move of God over their town of Barvis, on the Ile of Lewis, in Scotland, they sanctified themselves and pledged to pray every evening from 9pm to 3am. Soon, a group of men, led by her pastor, began a prayer meeting at the same times in a Barn. Several months went by while the purging of all spiritual dross was taking place. Finally, one young man stood and cried out to God saying, “My heart is pure, my hands are clean, it is time for you Lord to keep your promise and answer our prayers.” When they opened the barn doors, approximately 300 souls were prostrate in the adjacent field, under conviction of their sins. No preacher had preached, no music had been sung, no appeal had been given—just the power of the Holy Ghost brought conviction and conversion.