And Sarah said, God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me. — Gen 21:6
It was far above the power of nature, and even contrary to its laws—that the aged Sarah should be honored with a son. Just so, it is beyond all ordinary rules that I, a poor, helpless, undone sinner—should find grace to bear about in my soul the indwelling Spirit of the Lord Jesus. I, who once despaired, as well I might, for my nature was as dry, and withered, and barren, and accursed as a howling wilderness—even I have been made to bring forth fruit unto holiness! Well may my mouth be filled with joyous laughter, because of the remarkable, surprising grace which I have received from the Lord, for I have found Jesus, the promised seed, and He is mine forever!
This day will I lift up psalms of triumph unto the Lord who has remembered my low estate, for “my heart rejoices in the Lord; my horn is exalted in the Lord; my mouth is enlarged over my enemies, because I rejoice in Your salvation.” I would have all those who hear of my great deliverance from hell, and my most blessed visitation from on high, laugh for joy with me. I would surprise my family with my abundant peace. I would delight my friends with my ever-increasing happiness. I would edify the Church with my grateful confessions and even impress the world with the cheerfulness of my daily conversation.
Bunyan tells us that Mercy laughed in her sleep, and no wonder—when she dreamed of Jesus; my joy shall not stop short of hers while my Beloved is the theme of my daily thoughts. The Lord Jesus is a deep sea of joy—my soul shall dive therein, shall be swallowed up in the delights of His society. Sarah looked on her Isaac, and laughed with excess of rapture, and all her friends laughed with her; and you, my soul, look on your Jesus, and bid heaven and earth unite in your unspeakable joy.
He openeth, and no man shutteth. — Rev 3:7
Jesus is the keeper of the gates of paradise, and before every believing soul He sets an open door, which no man or devil shall be able to close against it. What joy it will be to find that faith in Him is the golden key to the everlasting doors. My soul, do you carry this key in your bosom, or are you trusting to some deceitful pick-lock, which will fail you at last? Hear this parable of the preacher, and remember it.
The great King has made a banquet, and He has proclaimed to all the world that none shall enter but those who bring with them the fairest flower that blooms. The men advance to the gate by thousands, and they bring each one the flower which he esteems the queen of the garden; but in crowds they are driven from the royal presence, and do not enter into the festive halls. Some bear in their hand the deadly nightshade of superstition, or the flaunting poppies of Rome, or the hemlock of self – righteousness but these are not dear to the King, the bearers are shut out of the pearly gates. My soul, have you gathered the rose of Sharon? Do you wear the lily of the valley in your bosom constantly? If so, when you come up to the gates of heave— you will know its value, for you have only to show this choicest of flowers, and the Porter will open—not for a moment will He deny you admission, for to that rose, the Porter always opens. You shall find your way with the rose of Sharon in your hand up to the throne of God Himself, for heaven itself possesses nothing that excels its radiant beauty; and of all the flowers that bloom in paradise—there is none that can rival the lily of the valley.
My soul, get Calvary’s blood-red rose into your hand by faith, by love wear it, by communion preserve it, by daily watchfulness make it your all in all and you shall be blessed beyond all bliss, happy beyond any dream! Jesus, be mine forever, my God, my heaven, my all.
Morning and Evening - June 15
Public domain content taken from Morning and Evening by Charles H. Spurgeon.