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HeartSong
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Joined: 2006/9/13
Posts: 3156


 Isolation

Isolation

"And he took him aside from the multitude" (Mark 7:33).

Paul not only stood the tests in Christian activity, but in the solitude of captivity. You may stand the strain of the most intense labor, coupled with severe suffering, and yet break down utterly when laid aside from all religious activities; when forced into close confinement in some prison house.

That noble bird, soaring the highest above the clouds and enduring the longest flights, sinks into despair when in a cage where it is forced to beat its helpless wings against its prison bars. You have seen the great eagle languish in its narrow cell with bowed head and drooping wings. What a picture of the sorrow of inactivity.

Paul in prison. That was another side of life. Do you want to see how he takes it? I see him looking out over the top of his prison wall and over the heads of his enemies. I see him write a document and sign his name--not the prisoner of Festus, nor of Caesar; not the victim of the Sanhedrin; but the--"prisoner of the Lord." He saw only the hand of God in it all. To him the prison becomes a palace. Its corridors ring with shouts of triumphant praise and joy.

Restrained from the missionary work he loved so well, he now built a new pulpit--a new witness stand--and from that place of bondage come some of the sweetest and most helpful ministries of Christian liberty. What precious messages of light come from those dark shadows of captivity.

Think of the long train of imprisoned saints who have followed in Paul's wake. For twelve long years Bunyan's lips were silenced in Bedford jail. It was there that he did the greatest and best work of his life. There he wrote the book that has been read next to the Bible. He says, "I was at home in prison and I sat me down and wrote, and wrote, for joy did make me write."

The wonderful dream of that long night has lighted the pathway of millions of weary pilgrims. That sweet-spirited French lady, Madam Guyon, lay long between prison walls. Like some caged birds that sing the sweeter for their confinement, the music of her soul has gone out far beyond the dungeon walls and scattered the desolation of many drooping hearts.

Oh, the heavenly consolation that has poured forth from places of solitude!
--S. G. Rees


"Taken aside by Jesus,
To feel the touch of His hand;
To rest for a while in the shadow
Of the Rock in a weary land.

"Taken aside by Jesus,
In the loneliness dark and drear,
Where no other comfort may reach me,
Than His voice to my heart so dear.

"Taken aside by Jesus,
To be quite alone with Him,
To hear His wonderful tones of love
'Mid the silence and shadows dim.

"Taken aside by Jesus,
Shall I shrink from the desert place;
When I hear as I never heard before,
And see Him 'face to face'?"


Streams in the Desert
by Mrs. Charles E. Cowman

 2008/12/19 17:09Profile









 Re: In the dark hole I have found pleasure.

Ah yes, the true saint of God discovers the heights of love in the depths of despair. The deeper the dungeon, the higher the mountaintop experience. One is directly related to the other. If a great house is to be built, then deep doundations must be dug. The taller the structure, the deeper the foundations. Our mansions in heaven may be directly related to the foundations that we "dig," here on earth. God bless all those who are digging and have perhaps hit rock or clay or mud. Those who keep on digging, discover the essence of the Lord. This post reminded of a piece that someone shared on sermonindex not so long ago. It was from a believer, I believe, from hundreds of years ago who was in such a dungeon awaiting death............brother Frank

I will tell to the world an incredible thing, namely, that I have found infinite sweetness in the bowels of the lion. And who will in any wise believe what I am going to relate here? Who can believe it?In a dark hole I have found pleasure; in a place of bitterness and death, rest and hope of salvation; in the abyss or depths of hell, joy; where others weep, I have laughed; where others fear, I have found strength; who will believe this? In a state of misery I have had very great delight; in a lonely corner I have had most glorious company, and in the severest bond, great rest. All these things, my fellow brethren in Jesus Christ, the gracious hand of God has given me. Behold, He that at first was far from me, is now with me, and Him whom I knew but a little, I now see clearly; to whom I once looked from afar, Him I now behold as present; He for whom I longed, now offers me His hand; He comforts me; He fills me with joy; He drives from me bitterness, and renews within me strength and sweetness; He makes me well; He sustains me; He helps me up; He strengthens me. Oh, how good is the Lord, who does not suffer His servants to be tempted above that they are able Oh, how easy, pleasant and sweet is His yoke.Is there any like God the Most High, who sustains and refreshes those that are tempted? He heals them that are bruised and wounded, and restores them altogether. Isa. 41; 43:20. None is like Him. Learn, most beloved brethren, how sweet the Lord is, how faithful and merciful; who visits His servants in trial (Isa. 43:2); who humbles Himself and condescends to be with us in our huts and humble abodes. He gives us a cheerful mind and peaceful heart.



 2008/12/19 17:24
HeartSong
Member



Joined: 2006/9/13
Posts: 3156


 Re:

Quote:
He gives us a cheerful mind and peaceful heart.


Amen.

 2008/12/19 17:29Profile





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