Stay Sharp (But Don’t Miss The Point)

Robert Murray McCheyne wrote this letter to his dear friend Daniel Edwards, who was leaving for missionary work in Germany, on October 2, 1840.

My dear friend,

I trust you will have a pleasant and profitable time in Germany. I know you will apply hard to German; but do not forget the culture of the inner man—I mean the heart. How diligently the cavalry officer keeps his saber clean and sharp; every stain he rubs off with the greatest care. Remember you are God’s sword—His instrument—I trust a chosen vessel unto Him to bear His name. In great measure, according to the purity and perfections of the instrument, will be the success. It is not great talents God blesses so much as great likeness to Jesus. A holy minister is an awful weapon in the hand of God.

My takeaways:

  • Hard work is important…
  • …but the hard work on my inner man is more important.
  • There is no substitute for attention to detail…
  • …but I need to not lose sight of the example of my Savior.
  • I need to get the point…
  • …but it’s more powerful to reflect the Person.

Bottom line: My motivation for staying sharp is to be more useful for my Savior. 

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