Active Faith – Streams in the Desert 02/22

“If thou canst believe, all things are possible. to him that believeth” (Mark 9:23).
Seldom have we heard a better definition of faith than was given once in one of our meetings, by a dear old coloured woman, as she answered the question of a young man how to take the Lord for needed help.
In her characteristic way, pointing her finger toward him, she said with great emphasis: “You’ve just got to believe that He’s done it and it’s done.” The great danger with most of us is that, after we ask Him to do it, we do not believe that it is done, but we keep on helping Him, and getting others to help Him; and waiting to see how He is going to do it.
Faith adds its “Amen” to God’s “Yea,” and then takes its hands off, and leaves God to finish His work. Its language is, “Commit thy way unto the Lord, trust also in him; and he worketh.’ –Days of Heaven upon Earth

“I simply take Him at His word,
I praise Him that my prayer is heard,
And claim my answer from the Lord;
I take, He undertakes.”

An active faith can give thanks for a promise, though it be not as yet performed; knowing that God’s bonds are as good as ready money. –Matthew Henry
Passive faith accepts the word as true
But never moves.
Active faith begins the work to do,
And thereby proves.
Passive faith says, “I believe it! every word of God is true. Well I know He hath not spoken what He cannot, will not, do.
He hath bidden me, ‘Go forward!’ but a closed-up way I see,
When the waters are divided, soon in Canaan’s land I’ll be.
Lo! I hear His voice commanding, ‘Rise and walk: take up thy bed’; And, ‘Stretch forth thy withered member!’ which for so long has been dead. When I am a little stronger, then, I know I’ll surely stand:
When there comes a thrill of heating, I will use with ease My other hand.
Yes, I know that ‘God is able’ and full willing all to do:
I believe that every promise, sometime, will to me come true.”
Active faith says, “I believe it! and the promise now I take, Knowing well, as I receive it, God, each promise, real will make. So I step into the waters, finding there an open way;
Onward press, the land possessing; nothing can my progress stay.
Yea, I rise at His commanding, walk straightway, and joyfully:
This, my hand, so sadly shrivelled, as I reach, restored shall be. What beyond His faithful promise, would I wish or do I need?
Looking not for ‘signs or wonders,’ I’ll no contradiction heed. Well I know that ‘God is able,’ and full willing all to do:
I believe that every promise, at this moment can come true.”
Passive faith but praises in the light,
When sun doth shine.
Active faith will praise in darkest night–Which faith is thine?
–Selected

Posted in Streams in the Desert | Leave a comment

God The Provider by Francis R. Havergal

‘My God shall supply all your need,
according to His riches in glory by
Christ Jesus.’Who shall tell our untold need,
Deeply felt, though scarely known!
Who the hungering soul can feed,
Guard, and guide, but God alone?
Blessed promise! while we see
Earthly friends must powerless be,
Earthly fountains quickly dry:
‘God’ shall all your need supply.

He hath said it! so we know
Nothing less can we receive.
Oh that thankful love may glow
While we restfully believe,–
Ask not how, but trust Him still;
Ask not when, but wait His will:
Simply on His word rely,
God ‘shall’ all your need supply.

Through the whole of life’s long way,
Outward, inward need we trace;
Need arising day by day,
Patience, wisdom, strength, and
grace.
Needing Jesus most of all,
Full of need, on Him we call;
Then how gracious His reply,
God shall ‘all’ your need supply!

Great our need, but greater far
Is our Father’s loving power;
He upholds each mighty star,
He unfolds each tiny flower.
He who numbers every hair,
Earnest of His faithful care,
Gave His Son for us to die;
God shall all ‘your’ need supply.

Yet we often vainly plead
For a fancied good denied,
What we deemed a pressing need
Still remaining unsupplied.
Yet from dangers all concealed,
Thus our wisest Friend doth shield;
No good thing will He deny,
God shall all your ‘need’ supply.

Can we count redemption’s teasure,
Scan the glory of God’s love?
Such shall be the boundless measure
Of His blessings from above.
All we ask or think, and more,
He will give in bounteous store,
He can fill and satisfy,
God shall all your need ‘supply.’

One the channel, deep and broad,
From the Fountain of the Throne,
Christ the Saviour, Son of God,
Blessings flow through Him alone.
He, the Faithful and the True,
Brings us mercies ever new:
Till we reach His home on high,
‘God shall all your need supply.’

(From ‘Ministry of Song’)

Posted in Frances Ridley Havergal, Poems/Hymns | Leave a comment

Wait With Patience – Streams in the Desert 02/21

“Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him” (Ps. 37:7).
Have you prayed and prayed and waited and waited, and still there is no manifestation?
Are you tired of seeing nothing move? Are you just at the point of giving it all up?
Perhaps you have not waited in the right way? This would take you out of the right place the place where He can meet you.
“With patience wait” (Rom. 8:25). Patience takes away worry. He said He would come, and His promise is equal to His presence. Patience takes away your weeping. Why feel sad and despondent? He knows your need better than you do, and His purpose in waiting is to bring more glory out of it all. Patience takes away self-works. The work He desires is that you “believe” (John 6:29), and when you believe, you may then know that all is well. Patience takes away all want. Your desire for the thing you wish is perhaps stronger than your desire for the will of God to be fulfiled in its arrival.
Patience takes away all weakening. Instead of having the delaying time, a time of letting go, know that God is getting a larger supply ready and must get you ready too. Patience takes away all wobbling. “Make me stand upon my standing” (Daniel 8:18, margin). God’s foundations are steady; and when His patience is within, we are steady while we wait. Patience gives worship. A praiseful patience sometimes “longsuffering with joyfulness” (Col. 1:11) is the best part of it all. “Let (all these phases of) patience have her perfect work” (James 1:4), while you wait, and you will find great enrichment. –C. H. P.

Hold steady when the fires burn,
When inner lessons come to learn,
And from this path there seems no turn
“Let patience have her perfect work.”
–L.S.P.

Posted in Streams in the Desert | Leave a comment

God of Creation, All-Powerful by Margaret Clarksoon

God of creation, all-pow’rful, all-wise,
Lord of the universe, rich with surprise,
Maker, Sustainer, and Ruler of all,
We are your children—you hear when we call.

God of the ages, through time’s troubled years,
You are the one in whom hist’ry coheres;
Nations and empires your purpose fulfill,
Moving in freedom, yet working your will.

God of redemption, who wrought our rebirth,
Called out your church from the ends of the earth,
Still you are Savior, put darkness to flight;
Overcome sin by salvation’s pure light.

God of your people, your Word still stands fast;
Do for us now as you’ve done in the past!
Yours is the kingdom, your triumph we claim,
Challenging evil in Jesus’ strong name.

God of our now, all our trust is in you,
Covenant God, ever faithful and true;
Sov’reign Creator, Redeemer, and Lord,
Now and forever your name be adored!

Posted in Margaret Clarkson, Poems/Hymns | Leave a comment

God hath not promised skies always blue by Annie Johnson Flint

  • God hath not promised skies always blue,
    Flower-strewn pathways all our lives through;
    God hath not promised sun without rain,
    Joy without sorrow, peace without pain.
  • But God hath promised strength for the day,
    Rest for the labor, light for the way,
    Grace for the trials, help from above,
    Unfailing sympathy, undying love.
  • God hath not promised we shall not know
    Toil and temptation, trouble and woe;
    He hath not told us we shall not bear
    Many a burden, many a care.
  • God hath not promised smooth roads and wide,
    Swift, easy travel, needing no guide;
    Never a mountain, rocky and steep,
    Never a river, turbid and deep.

Source: http://www.hymnal.net/hymn.php/h/720#ixzz1gEoILGG1

Posted in Annie Johnson Flint, Poems/Hymns | Tagged | 4 Comments

Victorious Living is Possible – Streams in the Desert 02/20

“Nothing shall be impossible unto you” (Matt. 17:20).
It is possible, for those who really are willing to reckon on the power of the Lord for keeping and victory, to lead a life in which His promises are taken as they stand and are found to be true.
It is possible to cast all our care upon Him daily and to enjoy deep peace in doing it.
It is possible to have the thoughts and imaginations of our hearts purified, in the deepest meaning of the word.
It is possible to see the will of God in everything, and to receive it, not with sighing, but with singing.
It is possible by taking complete refuge in Divine power to become strong through and through; and, where previously our greatest weakness lay, to find that things which formerly upset all our resolves to be patient, or pure, or humble, furnish today an opportunity–through Him who loved us, and works in us an agreement with His will and a blessed sense of His presence and His power–to make sin powerless over us.
These things are DIVINE POSSIBILITIES, and because they are His work, the true experience of them will always cause us to bow lower at His feet and to learn to thirst and long for more.
We cannot possibly be satisfied with anything less–each day, each hour, each moment, in Christ, through the power of the Holy Spirit–than to WALK WITH GOD.
–H. C. G. Moule
We may have as much of God as we will. Christ puts the key of the treasure-chamber into our hand, and bids us take all that we want. If a man is admitted into the bullion vault of a bank, and told to help himself, and comes out with one cent, whose fault is it that he is poor? Whose fault is it that Christian people generally have such scanty portions of the free riches of God? –McLaren.

Posted in Streams in the Desert | Leave a comment

Go to the Deep of God’s Promise by Carrie Breck

Go to the deeps of God’s promise;
Ask freely of Him, and receive;
All good may be had for the asking,
If, seeking, you truly believe.

Refrain

Go to the deeps of God’s promise;
There’s wideness of meaning untold
In the promises given His people,
And the treasures they ever unfold.

Go to the deeps of God’s promise;
And know of His wonderful might;
Whatever would be a true blessing,
For Jesus’ sake, comes as thy right.

Refrain

Go to the deeps of God’s promise;
The blessing is never denied;
He loves, and remembers His children,
And every good thing is supplied.

Refrain

Go to the deeps of God’s promise;
And claim whatsoever ye will;
The blessing of God will not fail thee,
His Word He will surely fulfill.

Refrain


Posted in Carrie Breck, Poems/Hymns | Leave a comment

Pruned to Yield Fruit – Streams in the Desert 02/19

“And every branch that beareth fruit he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit” (John 15:2).
A child of God was dazed by the variety of afflictions which seemed to make her their target. Walking past a vineyard in the rich autumnal glow she noticed the untrimmed appearance and the luxuriant wealth of leaves on the vines, that the ground was given over to a tangle of weeds and grass, and that the whole place looked utterly uncared for; and as she pondered, the Heavenly Gardener whispered so precious a message that she would fain pass it on:
“My dear child, are you wondering at the sequence of trials in your life? Behold that vineyard and learn of it. The gardener ceases to prune, to trim, to harrow, or to pluck the ripe fruit only when he expects nothing more from the vine during that season. It is left to itself, because the season of fruit is past and further effort for the present would yield no profit. Comparative uselessness is the condition of freedom from suffering. Do you then wish me to cease pruning your life? Shall I leave you alone?” And the comforted heart cried, “No!”
–Homera Homer-Dixon

It is the branch that bears the fruit,
That feels the knife,
To prune it for a larger growth,
A fuller life.
Though every budding twig be lopped,
And every grace
Of swaying tendril, springing leaf,
Be lost a space.
O thou whose life of joy seems reft,
Of beauty shorn;
Whose aspirations lie in dust,
All bruised and torn,
Rejoice, tho’ each desire, each dream,
Each hope of thine
Shall fall and fade; it is the hand
Of Love Divine
That holds the knife, that cuts and breaks
With tenderest touch,
That thou, whose life has borne some fruit
May’st now bear much.
–Annie Johnson Flint

Posted in Streams in the Desert | Leave a comment

Faith Becomes Sight – Streams in the Desert 02/18

“Have faith that whatever you ask for in prayer is already granted you, and you will find that it will be” (Mark 11:24).
When my little son was about ten years of age, his grandmother promised him a stamp album for Christmas. Christmas came, but no stamp album, and no word from grandmother. The matter, however, was not mentioned; but when his playmates came to see his Christmas presents, I was astonished, after he had named over this and that as gifts received, to hear him add,
“And a stamp album from grandmother.”
I had heard it several times, when I called him to me, and said, “But, Georgie, you did not get an album from your grandmother. Why do you say so?”
There was a wondering look on his face, as if he thought it strange that I should ask such a question, and he replied, “Well, mamma, grandma said, so it is the same as.” I could not say a word to check his faith.
A month went by, and nothing was heard from the album. Finally, one day, I said, to test his faith, and really wondering in my heart why the album had not been sent,
“Well, Georgie, I think grandma has forgotten her promise.”
“Oh, no, mamma,” he quickly and firmly said, “she hasn’t.”
I watched the dear, trusting face, which, for a while, looked very sober, as if debating the possibilities I had suggested. Finally a bright light passed over it, and he said,
“Mamma, do you think it would do any good if I should write to her thanking her for the album?”
“I do not know,” I said, “but you might try it.”
A rich spiritual truth began to dawn upon me. In a few minutes a letter was prepared and committed to the mail, and he went off whistling his confidence in his grandma. In just a short time a letter came, saying:
“My dear Georgie: I have not forgotten my promise to you, of an album. I tried to get such a book as you desired, but could not get the sort you wanted; so I sent on to New York. It did not get here till after Christmas, and it was still not right, so I sent for another, and as it has not come as yet, I send you three dollars to get one in Chicago. Your loving grandma.”
“As he read the letter, his face was the face of a victor. “Now, mamma, didn’t I tell you?” came from the depths of a heart that never doubted, that, “against hope, believed in hope” that the stamp album would come. While he was trusting, grandma was working, and in due season faith became sight.
It is so human to want sight when we step out on the promises of God, but our Saviour said to Thomas, and to the long roll of doubters who have ever since followed him: “Blessed are they who have not seen, and yet have believed.” –Mrs. Rounds

Posted in Streams in the Desert | Leave a comment

Freedom in Prison by Madame Guyon

A little bird I am,
Shut from the fields of air;
And in my cage I sit and sing
To Him who place me there;
Well pleased a prisoner to be,
Because, my God, it pleases Thee.

My cage confines me round;
Abroad I cannot fly;
But though my wing is closely bound,
My heart’s at liberty.
My prison walls can not control
The flight, the freedom of my soul.

Oh, it is good to soar
These bolts and bars above,
To Him whose purpose I adore,
Whose providence I love:
And in thy mighty will to find
The joy, the freedom of the mind.
Posted in Madame Guyon, Mothers, Poems/Hymns | 3 Comments