VALLEYS AND MOUNTAINTOPS
“[T]he LORD who goes with you will not leave you or forsake you” (Deut 31:6 ESV).
“Can you answer this question, believer? Can you find any reason why you are so often mourning instead of rejoicing? Why yield to gloomy apprehension? Who told you that the night would never end in day? Who told you that the sea of circumstances would ebb out until there was nothing left but long, muddy stretches of horrible poverty? Who told you that the ‘winter of your discontent’ would proceed from frost to frost; from snow, ice, and hail to deeper snow and an even worse blizzard of despair? Do you not know that day follows night, that flood comes after ebb, that spring and summer follow winter? Then hope! Always hope, for God will not fail you” Charles Spurgeon (ref#34, July 21st PM).
GOD understands quite well His children’s ups and downs. “Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him”(Ps 42:11 ESV).
And how can we again praise Him? By GOD’s doings—the work of His hands in our midst (Isa 29:32). No matter why I’m in the valley my FATHER is gladly obligated to continually redeem because of His oaths and promises to our father Abraham.
However, once recognizing my residence in the pit I have a choice about how long I stay. GOD will lift me to that mountain top faster if I quickly admit my dependence on Him in contriteness.
“[B]eing fallen, in our risings up again, it is Christ that must do the work, by (1) removing, or (2) weakening, or (3) suspending opposite hindrances; and (4) by advancing the power of his grace in us, to a further degree than we had before we fell” Richard Sibbes (ref#311, p113-114).
“Let us permit him to advance our salvation by a diversity of methods and not refuse to be humbled, so that he may more abundantly display his glory. Above all, let us not avoid the cross of suffering, by which the Son of God himself was trained from his earliest infancy” John Calvin (ref#164, June 7th).