Thursdays With Spurgeon—“The Hour Has Come”

This is a weekly series with things I’m reading and pondering from Charles Spurgeon. You can read the original seed thought here, or type “Thursdays With Spurgeon” in the search box to read more entries.

“The Hour Has Come” 

After Jesus said this, He looked toward heaven and prayed: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son may glorify You. (John 17:1) 

     Father, the hour is come.’ This is the hour ordained in the eternal purpose. The hour prophesied of which Daniel sought to know. The hour toward which all hours had pointed. The central hour—the hour up to which man dated and from which they will date again if they read time right. The hinge, pivot, and turning point of all human history! The dark yet delivering hour! The hour of vengeance and of acceptance! ‘The hour is come.’ …  

     You and I look into the hour of darkness, as a frequent rule, and see no further, for our eyes are dim through unbelief. But [Jesus] goes on beyond the hour and His prayer is, ‘Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You.’ He fixes His eyes upon the glory that was yet to be revealed and for joy of which He counts even His death to be but an hour—looking upon it as soon to be over and lost in the glory of His Father! 

     In all this, brothers and sisters, let us imitate our Lord and let us keep our eyes not on the present, but on the future; not on this light affliction, which is but for a moment, but on the far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory that will come of it. And let us with holy confidence, whenever our hour of darkness arrives, resort to our God in secret. The best preparation for the worst hour is prayer! The best remedy for a depressed spirit is nearness to God! 

From The Son Glorified By The Father And The Father Glorified By The Son 

Solomon became depressed when his gaze went no higher than “under the sun.” We, too, can become quite overwhelmed by our trials if our eyes only look at the present hour of darkness. 

The writer of Hebrews tells us to keep our eyes on Jesus who conquered in His hour of darkness—Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before Him He endured the Cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider Him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart (Hebrews 12:2-3). 

No matter what you are going through, keep your eyes on Jesus. Don’t give in to the darkness because Jesus has made you more than a conqueror if you will remain in Him (Romans 8:37-39). 

 

11 Quotes From “The Last Arrow”

Erwin McManus will get you fired up to make the most of the life God has given you! Check out my full review of The Last Arrow by clicking here. 

“I do not believe anyone is born average, but I do believe that many of us choose to live a life of mediocrity. I think there are more of us than not who are in danger of disappearing into the abyss of the ordinary. The great tragedy in this, of course, is that there is nothing really ordinary about us. We might not be convinced of this, but our souls already know it’s true, which is why we find ourselves tormented when we choose lives beneath our capacities and callings.” 

“Here is the painful reality: we will find ourselves defined by the average if we do not choose to defy the odds. … We can refuse to be average. We must refuse to be average. We must war against the temptation to settle for less. Average is always a safe choice, and it is the most dangerous choice we can make. Average protects us from the risk of failure, and it also separates us from futures of greatness.” 

“Most of us underestimate how much God actually wants to do in our lives and through our lives.” 

“I wonder how many victories are lost before the battle has even begun. I wonder how much more good God desires to usher into the world that has been thwarted by our own lack of ambition.” 

“If one day we are to have a conversation with God about the measure of our lives, I would rather have Him ask me why I tried to do too much than to have Him ask me why I settled for so little.” 

“Many of us keep longing for a new future while holding on to the past. We desperately want God to create something new for us, but we refused to let Him tear away all the old from us.” 

“The tragedy of a life that is never fully lived is not solely the loss of that one life. The tragedy is the endless number of lives that would have been forever changed if we had chosen to live differently.” 

“We do not help the world by choosing to be less or to do less; we help the world by choosing to be more and give more.” 

“Be ready when you get there. Don’t make the mistake of living your life waiting for good things to happen—make good things happen. Be faithful in the small things that do not matter to you as much and treat them with the same level of respect and importance as the big things connected to your hopes and dreams.” 

“The great tragedy would be to live your life waiting for that moment to come instead of living your life preparing for when that moment comes.” 

“If you truly live before you die, your life will have a power that not even death can conquer.” 

Stand Strong (book review)

Stand StrongNick Vujicic was born without arms or legs, as a result, he said he grew up being a “bully’s dream.” But Nick is an overcomer! He conquered his bullies, and in his book Stand Strong he wants to help students learn to conquer their bullies too.

Nick explains, “Your bully’s motives don’t matter. You do. Your safety and your happiness are more important to me and everyone else who loves and cares about you; so instead of focusing on why a bully is picking on you, let’s focus on helping you feel secure and happy again. … I will help you build your antibully antibodies.”

Using his own life as an example, Nick shares the raw emotions he felt when he was picked on by bullies. He is also transparent enough to share all the wrong ways he tried to avoid being bullied, and ultimately how he discovered the pattern for successfully navigating the bullies that come along all our paths. As Nick wraps up the book he observes, “Seriously, here is the idea I’m asking you to consider: what if you could find ways to learn and grow from being bullied? What if you took a bully’s hurtful actions and turn them into lessons learned so that you became stronger, wiser, and more confident?”

I found the steps in Nick’s Antibullying system to be steps that can be immediately applied. They are very do-able! And they will indeed make students stronger, wiser, and more confident.

This is a book I would recommend to not only school-aged students, but also parents, teachers, and school principals. If everyone could get together on the same program, the results would lead to a completely new environment in our schools.

I am a Waterbook book reviewer.

Thursdays With Oswald—Temptations Mature Us

Oswald ChambersThis is a weekly series with things I’m reading and pondering from Oswald Chambers. You can read the original seed thought here, or type “Thursdays With Oswald” in the search box to read more entries.

Temptations Mature Us

     When we are born again we get our first introduction into what God calls temptation. When we are sanctified we are not delivered from temptation, we are loosened into it; we are not free enough before either morally or spiritually to be tempted. Immediately we become His “brethren” we are free, and all these subtleties are at work. God does not shield any man or woman from any requirements of a full-grown man or woman [Luke 22:28]. … 

     When temptation comes, stand absolutely true to God no matter what it costs you, and you will find the onslaught leaves you with affinities higher and purer than ever before. Temptation overcome is the transfiguration of the natural into the spiritual and the establishment of conscious affinity with the purest and best.

From Conformed To His Image (emphasis added) 

Becoming a Christian doesn’t mean temptations stop. Just the opposite. Before becoming one of Christ’s “brethren” we weren’t exposed to the full onslaught of satan’s temptations, because satan wanted to keep us comfortably in his kingdom.

Jesus says to His followers, “You are those who have stood by Me in My trials” (Luke 22:28). It’s good to stand by Jesus and overcome all the trials and temptations that come our way.

  • Temptation overcome matures us.
  • Temptation overcome helps us see more acutely our need for a Savior and His abiding Spirit in us.
  • Temptation overcome makes us more empathetic to others who are going through the same temptation.
  • Temptation overcome glorifies God! 
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