Posted tagged ‘Morning Thoughts’

A Word to Internet Busybodies and Wiki-leak Christianity

November 19, 2011

It seems that in recent years, several groups of people have sought to use the Internet and in particular blogs to “expose” or “hold accountable” Christian leaders.  And so often, we are prone to believe what other people say about a brother or sister in Christ, especially if it is critical or some sort of exposé.  We may not be the ones to spread the gossip and slander, but we are not opposed to entertaining it either.  The later I find more subtle and dangerous, because we can justify being uncharitable and unChristian by “a pursuit of the truth.”  In most cases, Christian leaders are judged guilty until proven innocent.

This morning, I read a word from Octavius Winslow’s Morning Thoughts that addresses this sort of behavior directly.  I want to provide the entire devotion for you below.  Now, hear what Winslow is saying and not what he is not saying.  We indeed should care for truth, integrity, godliness, and so on, but the way in which we honor truth must also honor the call to love one another as Christ has loved us.  When it comes to busybodies on the Internet, anonymous bloggers calling out Christian leaders, or the like, it seems very unlikely that the driving principle and motivation of the heart is redemption and reconciliation expressed in genuine Christian love . . .

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Trinitarian Prayer

April 30, 2011

The April 26th devotion from Octavius Winslow’s Morning Thoughts really encouraged me in prayer.  I thought I’d post it here to make it more accessible.  You can read his devotional thoughts daily on the official Winslow website or you can also purchase the book or get the Kindle version for only $0.99.  Highly recommended.

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“For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.” Ephesians 2:18

What is prayer? It is the communion of the spiritual life in the soul of man with its Divine Author; it is a breathing back the divine life into the bosom of God, from where it came; it is holy, spiritual, humble converse with God. That was a beautiful remark of a converted heathen- “I open my Bible, and God talks with me; I close my Bible, and then I talk with God.” Striking definition of true prayer!

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We cannot ask too much!

January 15, 2011

Octavius Winslow nailed me hard October 12 in his Morning Thoughts.  He does this often, but given that this was the day I was coming back from Haiti, it came with particular force.  God has opened many doors and done many amazing things over the past six months.  It is as if he is giving far more than we are asking, and this to our shame.

Insert Winslow, commenting on Psalm 36:9 . . .

What stinted views, unjust conceptions, and wrong interpretations have we cherished of Him, simply because we overlook His character as the Fountain of living waters! We “limit the Holy One of Israel.” We judge of Him by our poor, narrow conception of things. We think that He is such a one as we ourselves are. We forget, in our approaches, that we are coming to an Infinite Fountain. That the heavier the demand we make upon God, the more we shall receive, and that the oftener we come, the more are we welcome. That we cannot ask too much. That our sin and His dishonor are, that we ask so little. We forget that He is glorified in giving; and that the more grace He metes out to His people, the richer the revenue of praise which He receives in return. How worthy of such an infinite Fountain of love and grace is His “unspeakable gift.” It came from a large heart; and the heart that gave Jesus will withhold no good thing from those who walk uprightly.

Father, forgive me for dishonoring you because of my unbelief. Enlarge my heart to believe your promises and fetch from your omnipotent hand the good that you are so readily desirous to impart.  Had I longed for your glory as I should, I would have asked for what only you can do.  But I have beckoned so seldom and have asked so little, and this to my shame.  Turn me into the kind of beggar who is familiar with riches flowing from your abundance, and never let me believe that you withhold any good thing because you have given me your Son.

Amen.

 

The Spirit of Christ Is a Missionary Spirit

December 7, 2010

Octavius Winslow, perhaps the best devotional writer you’ll ever read, communicates truth that provoke and stir up affections for Jesus in such encouraging ways.  This is a recent example from his Morning Thoughts:

The Spirit of Christ is an active, benevolent Spirit. It bore the Savior, when He was in the flesh, from country to country, from city to city, from house to house, preaching His own gospel to lost man. “He went about doing good.” If we have the Spirit of Christ, we shall be prompted to a like Christian love and activity on behalf of those who possess not the gospel, or who, possessing it, slight and reject the mercy. The Spirit of Christ is essentially a missionary Spirit. It commenced its labor of love at Jerusalem, and from that its center, worked its way with augmenting sympathy and widening sphere until it embraced the world as the field of its labor. Ah! that we manifest so little of this Spirit, ought to lead us to deep searchings of heart, and stir us up to earnest prayer: “Lord, make me more earnest for the salvation of souls, for the advancement of Your kingdom. Grant me this evidence of being Your—the possession of Your Spirit, constraining me to a more simple and unreserved consecration of my talents, my substance, my rank, my influence, my time, myself, to the establishment of Your truth, the advancement of Your cause, and thus to the wider diffusion of Your glory in the earth.”

Read the whole thing.

Come and Dine

July 9, 2008

Octavius Winslow [1808-1878] was a great devotional writer, and if you have never checked out his books Morning Thoughts or Evening Thoughts, I highly recommend them. In this morning’s devotion, I read something I found particularly encouraging and thought I’d pass it along to you. Here’s an excerpt:

“God has amply provided for all the needs of the Christian journey. The Lord Jesus being the believer’s Way, all nourishment for the pilgrimage of the saints is laid laid up in Him. All supply of wisdom for the perplexing way, strength for the wearisome way, grace for the perilous way, and sympathy for the trying way, is in Jesus. . . . All the love that is in God’s heart, grace that is in the Spirit’s nature, comfort that is in the Spirit’s tenderness, sanctifying truths, free invitations, and precious promises which cluster in the gospel of Christ, all are thy sacred nourishment provided for the journey to the mount of God. Listen to the voice of Jesus, saying to thee, ‘Come and dine.'”

Octavius Winslow, Morning Thoughts, July 9