God is my strong fortress and He makes my way blameless.
The God who girdeth me with strength (Psalm 18:32
). Physical strength is derived from God. Much more is spiritual. It is obtained through faith. And every believer may say, "His strength is mine." Thereby:
1. I live - live unto God, "soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world" (Titus 2:12; Hebrews 2:4; Galatians 2:20).
2. I stand - stand fast in temptation, attack, danger (Romans 14:4; 2 Corinthians 1:24; Philippians 4:1).
3. I walk - walk forward, in the way of the Lord, surely, swiftly (ver. 34), perseveringly (2 Corinthians 5:7; Isaiah 40:31).
4. I labour - labour with and for God, zealously, patiently, and not in vain (Isaiah 26:12; 1 Corinthians 15:58).
5. I endure - endure "hardness," afflictions, reproaches, yea, all things, supported and "strengthened with power through his Spirit in the inward man" (2 Timothy 2:3; Hebrews 11:27; Psalm 138:3).
6. I fight - fight "the good fight of faith," against his enemies, courageously and effectually (ver. 35).
7. I overcome - overcome in life and death (1 Corinthians 15:57). - D.
While walking in the country with several relatives, a little girl came to a deep ditch which could only be crossed by a narrow plank. Though for a time she feared to cross, she suddenly looked round and exclaimed: "Grandpa, you go first; you are the heaviest, and I want to see how you do it." After watching her grandparent safely over the plank, the child said: "Oh, I can do that; you have only to go straight and keep steady." May we net learn that if we would go the way that God has opened, we have but to follow His Word, go straight, and keep our faith steady? Our difficulties may be overcome if we will but allow God to clear the way, instead of attempting to do so in our own strength.
He maketh my way perfect.
A gentleman crossing the English Channel stood near the helmsman. It was a calm and pleasant evening, and no one dreamed of a possible danger to their good ship. But a sudden flapping of a sail, as if the wind had shifted, caught the ear of the officer on watch, and he sprang at once to the wheel, examining closely the compass. "You are half a point off the course," he said sharply to the man at the wheel. The deviation was corrected, and the officer returned to his post. "You must steer very accurately," said the looker-on, "when only half a point is so much thought of." "Ah! half a point in many places might bring us directly on the rocks," he said. What avails being almost right, if destruction is the end? Many, it is to be feared, have missed eternal life by "half a point." Alas, many Christians allow slight deviations from the law of Christ in their lives. He is daily with us to correct us, and we attain to the perfect way only by implicit obedience to the word of the Captain of our Salvation.
"The Bible is so strict and old-fashioned," said a young man to a greyhaired friend who was advising him to study God's Word if he would learn how to live. "There are plenty of books written nowadays that are moral enough in their teaching, and don't bind me down as the Bible does." The old merchant turned to his desk and took down a couple of rulers, one of which was slightly bent. With each of these he ruled a line, and silently handed the ruled paper to his companion. "Well," said the lad, "what do you mean?" One line is straight and true, is it not? Now, my young friend, when you mark your path in life, do not use a crooked ruler!"
God does not make straight even paths all alike, as in great cities now. There is infinite variety in the paths He makes, and He can make them anywhere. Think you not that He who made the spider able to drop anywhere, and to spin its own path as it goes, is not. able to spin a path for you through every blank or perplexity, or depression?
()I sometimes think of it as of a child sitting in a boat. The child does not know the coast, and it very little understands how to row. If the child were left to itself, pulling upon the oars, its right hand being a little stronger than the other, it would be all the time veering the boat to the right, and the boat would be constantly turning round and round. The child would, perhaps, make its way out of the harbour and into the ocean, and it would be carried away and lost if there were no guiding power in the boat except its own. But there in the stern sits the father. The uneven strokes of the child would carry the boat this way or that way out of its course; but the steady hand of the father overcomes those uneven strokes; and all the mistakes with the oars are rectified by the rudder, and the boat keeps the right course. So that the force exerted by the child, though misdirected, all works for good when the father guides.
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