“O my Savior, help me.
I am so slow to learn, so prone to forget, so weak to climb;
I am in the foothills when I should be on the heights;
I am pained by my graceless heart,
my prayerless days,
my poverty of love,
my sloth in the heavenly race,
my sullied conscience,
my wasted hours,
my unspent opportunities.
I am blind while light shines around me:
take the scales from my eyes . . .
Make it my chief joy to study Thee,
meditate on Thee, gaze on Thee,
sit like Mary at Thy feet,
lean like John on Thy breast,
appeal like Peter to Thy love,
count like Paul all things dung . . .
Let not faith cease from seeking Thee
until it vanishes into sight.
Ride forth in me, thou King of kings and Lord of lords,
that I may live victoriously, and in victory attain my end.
—Old Puritan prayer“
-from p.46 of “Fix Your Eyes On Jesus” by Anne Ortlund.
“I AM THAT I AM, therefore, signifies that Jehovah is the Unchangeable One. God is fully all that He is forever and ever, the Eternally Perfect One. Again, we are not. We are not fully all that we are at any given moment. We are ‘becoming.’ What we were, we are no longer. What we are, we shall not be. The child of today is the man of tomorrow. We are like flitting shadows. But God ‘is.’ God is fully all that He is at any given moment; and He lives all the fullness of His being continuously, fully, eternally. He does not become; He neither grows older nor weaker. He is the ever-burning fire that never diminishes.”
“Having lost the security of being rooted in the eternal reality of the Word of God, we are looking to busy activity to fill the void that has been created in our lives. And under that bondage to activity we find it difficult to linger with the Word simply for the joy of it. In fact, we may be afraid to stop our busyness lest it expose the shallowness of our lives. So we go on from activity to activity, from project to project. But activity is a dangerous source of fulfillment. Instead of finding our identity, our sense of self-worth, from our relationship with God, we begin to look to success in programs and other earthly indicators of success for our self-worth. But these will never satisfy. This will only enslave us more in our bondage to activity.”
“The terrible thing, the almost impossible thing, is to hand over your whole self— all your wishes and precautions— to Christ. But it is far easier than what we are all trying to do instead. For what we are trying to do is to remain what we call ‘ourselves’, to keep personal happiness as our great aim in life, and yet at the same time be ‘good’. We are all trying to let our mind and heart go their own way– centered on money or pleasure or ambition— and hoping, in spite of this, to behave honestly and chastely and humbly. And that is exactly what Christ warned us you could not do. As He said, a thistle cannot produce figs. If I am a field that contains nothing but grass-seed, I cannot produce wheat. Cutting the grass may keep it short: but I shall still produce grass and no wheat. If I want to produce wheat, the change must go deeper than the surface. I must be plowed up and re-sown.”
“Busyness can be a drug. It makes us feel important and needed. Fruitfulness is another matter. It is a miracle of God’s grace through His Word, imparted to a heart that stays quiet and low before Him, set upon doing His will only.” – Ray Ortlund