"And I will deliver thee out of the hand of the wicked, and I will redeem thee out of the hand of the terrible."Jer. xv. 21.
My soul, hash thou ever considered some of the many ways of softening trouble? Sit down, and learn it from this sweet scripture. Here is a general promise, which may be suited to particular circumstances, and such as will hold good in all. But first remember, that he who promiseth "to deliver from the sorrow, is the same that appointeth the sorrow: Hear ye the rod, and who hath appointed it." The Lord's rod hath a voice that speaks, as well as corrects; and it is a mark of wisdom to listen, as well as feel. Hence, if we mark the hand that appoints, we shall observe also all the other interesting particulars, both of the instruments by which the Lord works, the time and place, the means and end, and then discern love and grace, yea, Jesus himself, in all. Suppose it be the world that crosses, or Satan that tempts, or false friends that oppose, or our mother's children that be angry with us; yet all are but the Lord's ministers; they are the sword, but the hand is the Lord's; and though they mean ill; he will bring good; if they even cast into prison, Jesus will be there. All things, and all means, and all times, shall, at his command, minister to his own purpose. If there be a storm without, Jesus hath chambers to take them into; if the affliction be within, Jesus can help them out. Yea, the very "earth shall help the woman," when the enemy casts forth a flood after her to swallow her up. Be the storm what it may, Jesus is at the helm. Like Joseph's afflictions, they shall minister to good, and the end bring the proof, that the whole had the appointment in love. Hence, my soul, though the direction is short, it is very sweet; never look at the trial, without looking also at the Appointer; never allow thyself to view the affliction, without looking through it to One that stands behind, regulating and moving all. It matters not in this case, what the storm threatens, but what the Lord Jesus means; not what the instrument intends, but what Jesus hath appointed. And by thus looking to Christ, the greatest troubles will give thee but little concern. He saith, (blessed be his name) "I will deliver thee out of the hand of the wicked; and I will redeem thee out of the hand of the terrible." How it is to be accomplished, is his concern, and not mine. All I have to do is to rest in the certainty of the promise, by giving credit to the great Promiser; and the end will chew, that with him it is to make "darkness light, and crooked things straight."From the POOR MAN'S MORNING AND EVENING PORTIONS.
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