Monday, October 11, 2010

Bearing evenly every uneven thing

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. ~ 1 Cor 13:6-8
To bear: stegō
1) deck, thatch, to cover
a) to protect or keep by covering, to preserve
2) to cover over with silence
a) to keep secret
b) to hide, conceal
1) of the errors and faults of others
3) by covering to keep off something which threatens, to bear up against, hold out against, and so endure, bear, forbear
To believe: pisteuō
1) to think to be true, to be persuaded of, to credit, place confidence in
a) of the thing believed
1) used in the NT of the conviction and trust to which a man is impelled by a certain inner and higher prerogative and law of soul
2) to trust in Jesus or God as able to aid either in obtaining or in doing something: saving faith
To hope: elpizō
1) to hope
a) in a religious sense, to wait for salvation with joy and full confidence
2) hopefully to trust in
To endure: hypomenō
1) to remain
a) to tarry behind
2) to remain i.e. abide, not recede or flee
a) to preserve: under misfortunes and trials to hold fast to one's faith in Christ
b) to endure, bear bravely and calmly

Sometimes it seems that to bear, believe, hope, and endure are merely high, lofty ideals. To remain faithful in a trial, however "large" or "small" in nature it may be, has been an ever-constant desire of mine. Not just to appear patient on the surface, but to be steadfast in heart and mind. Every thought and feeling turned towards the One who is able to save to the uttermost. Never empty of devotion and charity, but a continual outpouring of the divine life of Christ within and poured onto others.
"But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life."~ John 4:14
During trials I find myself constantly turning to that dear old book, If, written by Amy Carmichael many years ago. From the many years that she spent and gave her life for the souls of countless children in India, Amy learned what it meant to live and love as her dear Saviour did. She walked the road of her Saviour and never looked back. Thanks to this wonderful sister in the faith, we have strengthening words of wisdom for those who begin on the same path.

If I am soft to myself and slide comfortably into the vice of self-pity and self-sympathy; if I do not by the grace of God practice fortitude, then I know nothing of Calvary love.

If I myself dominate myself, if my thoughts revolve round myself, if I am so occupied with myself I rarely have “a heart at leisure from itself,” then I know nothing of Calvary love.

If, the moment I am conscious of the shadow of self crossing my threshold, I do not shut the door, and in the power of Him who works in us to will and to do, keep that door shut, then I know nothing of Calvary love.

If, in dealing with one who does not respond, I weary of the strain, and slip from under the burden, then I know nothing of Calvary love.

If I put my own happiness before the well-being of the work entrusted to me; if, though I have this ministry and have received much mercy, I faint, then I know nothing of Calvary love.

If by doing some work which the undiscerning consider “not spiritual work” I can best help others, and I inwardly revel, thinking it is the spiritual for which I crave, when in truth it is the interesting and exciting, then I know nothing of Calvary love.

If monotony tries me, and I cannot stand drudgery; if stupid people fret me and the little ruffles set me on edge; if I make much of the trifles of life, then I know nothing of Calvary love.

If I am inconsiderate about the comfort of others, or their feelings, or even of their little weaknesses; if I am careless about their little hurts and miss opportunities to smooth their way; if I make the sweet running of household wheels more difficult to accomplish, then I know nothing of Calvary love.

If interruptions annoy me, and private cares make me impatient; if I shadow the souls about me because I myself am shadowed, then I know nothing of Calvary love.

If souls can suffer alongside, and I hardly know it, because the spirit of discernment is not in me, then I know nothing of Calvary love.

If I avoid being “ploughed under,” with all that such ploughing entails of rough handling, isolation, uncongenial situations, strange tests, then I know nothing of Calvary love.

If the love that “alone maketh light of every heavy thing, and beareth evenly every uneven thing” is not my heart’s desire, then I know nothing of Calvary love.

Deep unto deep, O Lord,
Crieth in me,
Gathering strength I come,
Lord, unto Thee.
Jesus of Calvary,
Smitten for me,
Ask what Thou wilt, but give
Love to me.