"The cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?" (John 18:11).This was a greater thing to say and do than to calm the seas or raise the dead. Prophets and apostles could work wondrous miracles, but they could not always do and suffer the will of God. To do and suffer God's will is still the highest form of faith, the most sublime Christian achievement. To have the bright aspirations of a young life forever blasted; to bear a daily burden never congenial and to see no relief; to be pinched by poverty when you only desire a competency for the good and comfort of loved ones; to be fettered by some incurable physical disability; to be stripped bare of loved ones until you stand alone to meet the shocks of life--to be able to say in such a school of discipline, "The cup which my Father has given me, shall I not drink it?'--this is faith at its highest and spiritual success at the crowning point. Great faith is exhibited not so much in ability to do as to suffer. --Dr. Charles Parkhurst***To have a sympathizing God we must have a suffering Saviour, and there is no true fellow-feeling with another save in the heart of him who has been afflicted like him.We cannot do good to others save at a cost to ourselves, and our afflictions are the price we pay for our ability to sympathize. He who would be a helper, must first be a sufferer. He who would be a saviour must somewhere and somehow have been upon a cross; and we cannot have the highest happiness of life in succoring others without tasting the cup which Jesus drank, and submitting to the baptism wherewith He was baptized.The most comforting of David's psalms were pressed out by suffering; and if Paul had not had his thorn in the flesh we had missed much of that tenderness which quivers in so many of his letters.The present circumstance, which presses so hard against you (if surrendered to Christ), is the best shaped tool in the Father's hand to chisel you for eternity. Trust Him, then. Do not push away the instrument lest you lose its work.***"Strange and difficult indeed We may find it, But the blessing that we need Is behind it."***The school of suffering graduates rare scholars. from Streams in the Desert
_________________SI Moderator - Greg Gordon
The school of suffering graduates rare scholars.
I shared with a Brother that I felt like an olive being squeezed out in a press, and he sent this hymn back to me -Olives that have known no pressureNo oil can bestow;If the grapes escape the winepress,Cheering wine can never flow;Spikenard only through the crushing,Fragrance can diffuse.Shall I then, Lord, shrink from sufferingWhich Thy love for me would choose?Each blow I sufferIs true gain to me.In the place of what Thou takestThou dost give Thyself to me.Do my heart-strings need Thy stretching,Songs divine to prove?Do I need for sweetest musicCruel treatment of Thy love?Lord, I fear no deprivationIf it draws to Thee;I would yield in full surrenderAll Thy heart of love to see.I'm ashamed, my Lord, for seekingSelf to guard alway;Though Thy love has done its stripping,Yet I've been compelled this way.Lord, according to Thy pleasureFully work on me;Heeding not my human feelings,Only do what pleases Thee.If Thy mind and mine should differStill pursue Thy way;If Thy pleasure means my sorrow,Still my heart shall answer "Yea!"'Tis my deep desire to please Thee,Though I suffer loss;E'en though Thy delight and gloryMean that I endure the cross.Oh, I'll praise Thee, e'en in weepingMingle with my song.Thine increasing sweetness calls forthGrateful praises all day long.Thou hast made Thyself more preciousThan all else to me;Thou increase and I decrease, Lord-This is now my only plea. Eph 5:1,2 Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; and walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given Himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.