Monthly Archives: February 2015

♣ Light in the Shadows

light in the shadows

NO MATTER HOW powerful our conversion and the assurance of it may be, there may come those times – however long or short– when we will seriously question the validity of our salvation. Such times are most likely to come in the fiercest moment of our trials and there is no greater intensity than when feeling like a reprobate, as if all hell were to point its finger at you and leave you almost in a state of paralysis. There is no darker time of loneliness and a sense of being abandoned than when seriously examining our foundations, as to whether we are building on the Rock or sand. We must examine ourselves in the light of Scripture to know whether we are truly in the faith. Such times will shake us to the very core and completely empty us of any self-confidence to where we can only throw ourselves on the mercy of God through Jesus Christ. For those who are at that place and who long to know they truly belong to God, I pray you find great comfort and encouragement from the following words of Octavius Winslow:

“Say you to the righteous, that it shall be well with him” – Isaiah 3:10

“IN all the spiritual exercises through which the believer in Jesus passes, it must in truth be well with him as to his real standing in Christ. You may be walking in darkness, or in light. You may be mourning in the valley, or rejoicing on the mount; now conquering, now foiled; now weeping, now rejoicing; yet it is still well with you as a pardoned, justified, saved sinner. Nothing can touch your interest in the Saviour, or expel you from the covenant, or change the love of God towards you. There are tides in the faith and comfort of a child of God, even as there are in the ocean. The believer has his ebb and flow, his fluctuations of spiritual feeling. It is often low tide with his soul. The waves of spiritual joy and peace ebb, and all looks barren and cheerless. And now he begins to question the reality of all his former experience, and the sincerity of all his past professions. He abjures his adoption, doubts his interest in Christ, puts from him the promises, appropriates the judgments, keeps back from the ordinances, and his soul refuses to be comforted. But, beloved saint of God, is there no flow, as well as ebb, in the spiritual joy and comfort of the believer? Is there no return of the tide of faith and consolation and hope, in the Christian’s experience—the wave of love’s infinite ocean, of the soul’s perfect peace, of glory’s anticipated joy, rolling back again upon the shore, in sweet heavenly cadence? Oh yes! Listen to the Divine assurances of this: “I have loved you with an everlasting love.” “I have chosen you, and not cast you away.” “I will never leave you, nor forsake you.” “I have prayed for you, that your faith frill not.” “I will restore comforts unto you.” “I will not leave you comfortless.” You have a little strength.” “Therefore will the Lord wait that he may be gracious unto you.” “He will be very gracious unto you at the voice of your cry: when he shall hear it, he will answer you.” “He restores my soul.” All these exceeding great and precious promises, beloved, are yours. They are your Father’s epistles of love, and He bids you read, believe, and enjoy them.

Oh, it is, it must be, well with those whose sins are forgiven through Christ, whose people are accepted in the Beloved, whose God is the Lord, and upon whom His eye of love and delight rests from the beginning of the year to the end of the year. Say not it is ill with your soul, and not well, because the Holy Spirit is inserting the plough more deeply into your heart, thus discovering more of its hidden evil, detecting the lurking sin where its existence was not suspected, and discovering the flaw and the failure in the action, the principle, the motive, the end, which the fair surface, self-flattery, or specious reasoning had concealed. Oh say not that it is ill with your soul, and not well, because Jesus does not speak, God does not smile, and prayer is not answered. “For a small moment,” says God, “have I hid myself from you; but with great mercies will I gather you.” In the dreary, lonely, trying path you now tread, trace you not the footsteps of the flock, and, yet more distinct and blessed than all, the footprints of the Shepherd of the flock? Do not be, then, cast down. The Lord will bring you through this night of weeping into a morning of joy. And your knowledge will be the deeper, and your faith the stronger, and your joy the fuller, and your hope the brighter, and your song the sweeter and the louder, for all the painful exercises through which your soul has passed, and with deeper emphasis you shall exclaim, “It is well.””

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