The life of those who dwell in the secret place of the Most High may be called a Hidden Life, because the animating principle, the vital or operative element, is not so much in itself as in another. It is a life grafted into another life. It is the life of the soul, incorporated into the life of Christ; and in such a way, that, while it has a distinct vitality, it has so very much in the sense, in which the branch of a tree may be said to have a distinct vitality from the root.

Monday, April 15, 2024

Keep The Eye Fixed on God's Order of Things

...the man, who has experienced the practical annihilation of his own will, does every thing and suffers every thing precisely in the order of God’s providence. It is the PRESENT MOMENT, considered as indicating the divine arrangement of things, which furnishes the truest and safest test of character. Holiness requires the fulfilment of our whole duty; and our duty necessarily has relation to the facts which God’s providence now presents before us. If our whole soul goes forth in obedience to what his holy providence now imposes on us, then, and not otherwise, are we acceptable in his sight. It is necessary, therefore, to keep our eye fixed upon God’s order of things. We must do this in relation to our place and situation in life, whatever it may be; not murmuring at our supposed ill lot; not giving way to any eager desires of change; but remaining quietly and humbly just where God has seen fit to place us.  

We must take this course, also, (which is sometimes a more difficult thing,) in relation to our duties. We must not only do the right thing, but must endeavor to do it in the right time: which is not our time, or that which mere human wisdom would suggest, but God’s time. It is one of Satan’s artifices, not merely to prevent the discharge of duties, but when this fails, to prevent the performance of them at the right time; for instance, by infusing in us too great eagerness of spirit, and leading us in our hurry to anticipate the divine order. When he makes us do this, he secures his object in a considerable degree at least; because if we do the precise thing which God requires of us, we nevertheless sin in the manner of doing it. It is of the highest importance, therefore, that we should keep our will in complete subjection to the divine moment, the moment of God, which is the present moment. The question which should be ever present, is, what does God require of me NOW? And we are to remember, that God makes known his order in parts, and not as a whole; he has his own plan and not ours; and he reveals it in his own time and degree, and not in ours. We must receive it, therefore, humbly and submissively, just as he presents it to us; though, in the view of our limited understandings, nothing but clouds and darkness may rest upon the future. It is a mind in this position which God is pleased with; which sees the divine developments in every thing that takes place; and which, in every situation, walks in the simplicity of a will lost to itself, and found only in God.

— from The Life of Faith, Part 2, Chapter 9.

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