Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time. Revelation 12:12.
Those who consecrate their all to God will not be left unmolested by the enemy of souls. Satan will come to them with his specious temptations, designing to allure them from their loyalty to God. He will present to them his bribe, as he did to Christ in the wilderness of temptation, saying, “All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me” (Matthew 4:9).
But what should be the answer of the Christian to all the temptations of the evil one? He should say, “I will not lend my influence in any way to the advancement of anything save the cause of Christ. I am not my own; I have been bought with a price. I am not to live to please myself; for I have been purchased, ransomed by the blood of Christ. It is not possible for me to give to Christ more than that which belongs to Him; for every moment of my life belongs to Him. I am His possession, a servant employed to do the will of my Master.”
This is the only position that is safe for us to occupy; and if the individual members of the church felt in this way, what a power would the church exert to draw and win souls to Christ. It is this halfhearted work, the effort to serve God and the devil at the same time, that leaves the church so destitute of the Spirit of God.
Were the members of the church consecrated to God, were they in the unity of the Spirit, in the bond of peace, were they organized for the purpose of imparting to others an influence of good, the church would be indeed the light of the world. Should the individual members seek to represent Christ to the world in character and life, thousands would be attracted to the Saviour, who now have reason to criticize the words and works of those who profess the name of Christ.
“For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us” (2 Corinthians 4:6, 7).—Home Missionary, October 1, 1892, par. 3.
Ye Shall Receive Power p. 348
—-We all are in varying stages of covid. Please keep us in prayer. Rose
—-My niece’s 1 month old baby, Naomi, is critically sick with RSV and they are transporting her to ____, a 2 hour trip in ambulance. They have her on oxygen and said it doesn’t look good. Please lift her and her mother Amanda. Linda
—-There’s a fire in downtown ____. Please pray for the firefighters and that it does not spread. Jennifer
—-Please pray for my daughter, Sara, who just had surgery for a perforated bowel. Please pray that she will heal quickly and without complications. Mary
Every evening when I was a child, I would sit on my grandfather’s daybed and listen to the stories of his youthful adventures. He would tell of the many times that he would wade out into a stream and sleep on large, flat rocks that stuck out above the surface of the water. There were still vast areas of woods and wild animals that roamed the Pennsylvanian countryside in those far-off days, so by sleeping in the middle of a river, he could keep away from the mountain lions that prowled about. I had always lived in Michigan, so some of the things my grandfather described were difficult for me to visualize. I had never seen rocks large enough or flat enough to sleep on.
Because my grandfather was an artist, he paid close attention to detail and was able to describe the scenes of his stories so well, I felt as if I were there. One of these places was a valley between two mountains. Trains stopped for water there and huge, flat rocks sat in the river that ran along side of the tracks. As I listened to the story about this place, I could visualize it, but still it seemed so unreal to a girl who had never seen such things.
Eventually, I grew up, got married, and had a child. The story of the sleeping rocks was crowded into a corner of my mind. In the process of time, we moved to Pennsylvania. Some of Grandfather’s stories began to come to my mind as we explored our new area. After having lived in a crowded city for a few months, we moved to Tank, a tiny community of five houses. As we were visiting with our neighbors, one day, we commented on the strange name of our new home. They explained that it was named Tank because trains used to stop at a water tank to fill their reservoir with water in order to make the steam that was needed to continue along its way.
As we took a walk one day, we saw the remains of that old, crumbling water tank alongside an old abandoned railroad track. The track ran alongside a river through this narrow valley in the Nescopeck mountains. As we stood on the bridge looking down into that river, I suddenly noticed the large, flat rocks sticking out above the surface of the water. They were, indeed, large enough and flat enough to sleep on with enough room that one would not have to worry about falling off. With delight I realized that I was looking upon the very rocks that my grandfather had slept on so long ago. I wanted to stay there forever to feel close to the only person who took time for me when I was a little girl.
Although nearly a century had passed, those rocks had not changed. Although the waters of time were flowing by, they had remained. So it is with our Dear Saviour. He reminds us, “I am the LORD, I change not.” Mal 3:6 Truly He is the Rock of Ages. He is the Eternal, Enduring One, “the Rock, His work is perfect: for all His ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is He.” Deut 32:4
Jesus declared, “Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is like: He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock. But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great.” Luke 6:47-49 How He longs for us to build our life on the Rock, that the storms of life that are crashing all around us will not destroy us for our lives are founded upon His Life.
*The Lord’s our Rock, in Him we hide, A Shelter in the time of storm; Secure whatever ill betide,
A Shelter in the time of storm. A shade by day, defense by night, A Shelter in the time of storm; No fears alarm, no foes afright, A Shelter in the time of storm.
The raging storms may round us beat, A Shelter in the time of storm We’ll never leave our safe retreat,
A Shelter in the time of storm. O Rock divine, O Refuge dear, A Shelter in the time of storm; Be Thou our Helper ever near, A Shelter in the time of storm.
May we declare as did David, “My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him. He only is my rock and my salvation: he is my defence; I shall not be moved. In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God. Trust in him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us.” Ps 62:5-8 May we find the comfort and shelter in the Rock, Christ Jesus that we so much need today.
* A Shelter in the Time of Storm by Vernon J. Charlesworth