Awake, awake; put on thy strength, O Zion; put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city. Isaiah 52:1.
During the night I . . . passed through an experience similar to that which I had at Salamanca, New York, two years ago. When I awoke from my first short sleep, light seemed to be all around me, the room seemed to be full of heavenly angels. The Spirit of God was upon me, and my heart was full to overflowing. O what love was burning in my heart! I was exclaiming aloud, “Lord Jesus, I love Thee; Thou knowest that I love Thee. My heavenly Father, I praise Thee with my whole heart. ‘For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life’ (John 3:16). ‘The path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day’ (Proverbs 4:18). Jesus, my Redeemer, the Representative of the Father, I put my trust in Thee.”
My peace was like a river, I seemed to be shut in with God, in sweet communion with Him through my waking and sleeping hours. What high and holy privileges seemed to be mine in the love of Jesus, His life and His guardianship. . . .
Oh, why does not the church of Christ arise, and put on her beautiful garments! Why does she not shine? The great reason of such feeble Christianity is that those who claim to believe the truth have so little knowledge of Christ, and so low an estimate of what He will be to them, and what they may be to Him. We have the most solemn, weighty truths ever committed to mortals.
Were our words, our thoughts, our actions, more pure and elevated, more in accordance with the holy faith we profess, we should view our responsibilities in a far different light. How solemn, how sacred, they would appear! We would have a deeper sense of our obligations, and should make it our constant aim to perfect holiness in the fear of God. Earthly, temporal things would be subordinate to the heavenly and eternal. . . .
I am so grateful for the privilege of being connected with God in any way. I feel highly honored. All I ask is that the Lord in His great mercy and lovingkindness will give me strength to use in His service.–Letter 20a, Jan. 9, 1893, to Capt. C. Eldridge.
This Day With God p. 17
—–Please pray for my sister Christy who has breast cancer. Cathy
—–I have had IBS for four years and the doctors have not been able to clear it up. Please pray for me. Jessica
—–At approximately 9:15 am local time on April 9, an Adventist Aviation-Indonesia (AAI) mission plane piloted by veteran pilot Bob Roberts crashed upon take-off at the AAI headquarters in Papua, claiming his life as well as those of several passengers on board. It is believed that there were six passengers and that at least two have been taken to a local hospital, although this has not yet been confirmed. Please pray for his wife Jan and his family and friends. Shelley
—–Jan’s sister has cancer and has only a few months to live. Pray for calming spirits for them, and wisdom on what to do. John
—–Please pray for Esther as she and the children are going to help her best friend who has recently had a baby by C-section. Since Esther just recently got over mastitis, I’m afraid that she will overdo and get sick again. Pray for her safety and health. Rose
When our children were little and it was time for Ron to come home from work, Esther Marie and Ronnie Jay liked to stand at the corner of our yard and wait for him. They were not allowed to go any further, so they would go to the limit and stretch up as tall as they could trying to be the first one to see him.
One day, they got the idea that if they climbed in the pine tree that grew beside the spot where they always stood, they could see their daddy sooner. Just as they started to climb, I happened to look out of the window and saw them. Rushing outside, I shouted for them to get down. Then I explained that they should not climb pine trees because the sap that was flowing heavy that time of year would get on their clothes and in their hair and make a terrible mess.
For a few days, they obeyed. Finally, the temptation to climb that tree became too strong and up they went when I wasn’t looking. Soon they saw Ron coming around the corner. Down the tree they went and over to the car they ran to give their daddy a big hug. Then they followed him into the house.
When they got inside, Eileen noticed that her four-year-old sister’s long, reddish-brown hair was messy and got a brush to brush it. Try as she might, it was impossible to get the brush through her little sister’s hair. Eileen was puzzled and brought her to me. It was evident that she had disobeyed. Her hair matted with sticky pine sap, her clothes were dirty and spotted with that sticky stuff.
Washing her hair did no good. I called my mother, who suggested butter. I had to work the butter into her hair. That helped somewhat, although Esther Marie was not at all happy about being covered with grease. After shampooing her hair several more times to get the butter out, we again tried to comb it. Globs of sticky sap remained. I wasn’t sure what to do.
I asked some of the ladies at church. One suggested peanut butter. Esther Marie was even less happy with that suggestion! I was not very happy either as it made even a worse mess than the butter had, but it worked. After several more shampooings the peanut butter came out, and her hair was pine sap free and able to be combed. She learned her lesson and did not climb in that tree again.
How often we find ourselves in the same situation that Esther Marie did. Our Great Creator, through His Holy Word warns us what we should avoid so that we will not get into difficulty, but we yield to the temptation anyway and do the very thing that we know we should not do. Soon we become covered and spotted and filthy with the pine sap of sin. “We are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.” “The whole head is sick, and the whole heart faint. From the sole of the foot even unto the head there is no soundness in it; but wounds, and bruises, and putrifying sores: they have not been closed, neither bound up, neither mollified with ointment.” Isa 64:6; 1:5,6 Like Paul, we cry, For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” Rom 7:15-24
Praise God, we do not have to stay in that condition! We have a Loving Saviour Who will cleanse us from all of our sin. Zechariah was given a vision of this very thing. “Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel. And he answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with change of raiment.” Zec 3:1-4 John tells us, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1John 1:9
Let us come to our Dear Saviour now for the cleansing and forgiveness we so much need. Let us hide His Word in our heart that we might not sin against God. Let us refrain our feet from every evil way, that we might keep His word. Ps 119:11, 101