To whom be glory forever. Amen — Rom 11:36
“To Him be glory forever!” This should be the single desire of the Christian. All other wishes must be subservient and tributary to this one. The Christian may wish for prosperity in his business but only so far as it may help him to promote this, “To Him be glory forever!” He may desire to attain more gifts and more graces but it should only be that “To Him may be glory forever!” You are not acting as you ought to—when you are moved by any other motive than a single eye to your Lord’s glory.
As a Christian, you are “of God, and through God.” Then see to it that you live “to God.” Let nothing ever set your heart beating so mightily—as love to Him. Let this ambition fire your soul. Let this be the foundation of every enterprise upon which you enter and your sustaining motive whenever your zeal would grow chill. Make God your only object. Depend upon it, where SELF begins—sorrow begins! But if God is my supreme delight and only object, to me it is equal whether He ordains life or death; ease or pain!
Let your desire for God’s glory be a growing desire. You blessed Him in your youth, do not be content with such praises as you gave Him then. Has God prospered you in business? Give Him more—as He has given you more. Has God given you greater grace? Praise Him by stronger faith than you exercised at first. Does your knowledge grow? Then sing more sweetly. Do you enjoy happier times than you once had? Have you been restored from sickness, and has your sorrow been turned into peace and joy? Then give Him more music; put more coals and more sweet frankincense into the censer of your praise!
Practically in your life give Him honor, putting the “Amen!” to this doxology to your great and gracious Lord, by your own individual service and increasing holiness!
He that cleaveth wood shall be endangered thereby. — Eccl 10:9
Oppressors may take advantage of poor and needy men—as easily as they can split logs but they had better mind, for it is a dangerous business—for a splinter from a tree has often killed the woodsman. Jesus is persecuted in every injured saint, and He is mighty to avenge His beloved ones. Success in treading down the poor and needy is a thing to be trembled at. If there is no danger to persecutors here—there will be great danger hereafter.
To cleave wood is a common every-day business, and yet it has its dangers; so then, reader, there are dangers connected with your calling and daily life—which it will be well for you to be aware of. We refer not to hazards by flood and field, or by disease and sudden death but to perils of a spiritual sort. Your occupation may be as humble as log splitting, and yet the devil can tempt you in it. You may be a domestic servant, a farm laborer, or a mechanic, and you may be greatly screened from temptations to the grosser vices, and yet some secret sin may do you damage. Those who dwell at home, and mingle not with the rough world—may yet be endangered by their very seclusion.
Nowhere is he safe—who thinks himself so! Pride may enter a poor man’s heart; avarice may reign in a cottager’s bosom; impurity may venture into the quietest home; and anger, and envy, and malice may insinuate themselves into the most rural abode! Even in speaking a few words—we may sin. A little purchase at a shop—may be the first link in a chain of temptations. The mere looking out of a window—may be the beginning of evil.
O Lord, how exposed we are! How shall we be secured! To keep ourselves is work too hard for us—only You Yourself are able to preserve us in such a world of evils. Spread Your wings over us, and we, like little chicks, will cower down beneath You, and feel ourselves safe!