Wednesday, February 20, 2008

the final isolation of the soul

Here's some wise words about contentment which mean a lot to me:

Let me put it plainly - the danger with some of us is to spend far too much of our time even in reading [Christian books] about Him. The day may come, indeed will come, when we shall not be able to read. Then comes the test. Will you still be happy? Do you know Him so well that though you become deaf or blind this fount will still be open? Do you know Him so well that you can talk to Him and listen to Him and enjoy Him always? Will all be well because you have always been so dependent on Him that nothing else really matters! ...

"I have come to learn in whatsoever state I am therein to be self-sufficient and independendent of circumstances." (Phil 4:11)

Christian people, can you say that, do you know that state? ... Life may force it upon us, but even if circumstances do not, the time is bound to come, soon or late, when earth and every earthly scene will pass away, and in that final isolation of the soul we shall be alone, facing death and eternity. The greatest thing in life is to be able to say with Christ Himself at that hour: 'And yet I am not alone because the Father is with me' (John 16:32).

In the final isolation of the soul, may Christ be all and everything to me.

The quote is from Martyn Lloyd-Jones Spiritual Depression pp.285-6.


Miranda said...

Jean, how do you manage to post an entry to your blog at 6.30pm when you have four kids?! The time between 5.30 and 7.30 is a write-off for me and I only have 2 kids!

Jean said...

My precious 10 minutes off after dinner prep/eating ... the kids are all on a high after dinner running around having fun, and I get 10 minutes to tap away ... then that's it for the day and it's kids to bed and an evening with my hubby. Did you want so much information?!

Anonymous said...

Jean, I'm curious to know the context of this quote as I see its from a book on spiritual depression. The problem with that kind of depression seems to be the exact opposite of the experience described (..and yet I am not alone..). We can assent to that fact for we know its true, but when God feels a million miles from us its hard to listen to and enjoy Him and hanging onto his revealed word may be all we have.


Jean said...

Cathy, by "reading" he doesn't mean reading the Bible, but reading Christian books about Jesus rather than getting to know him personally (i.e. an intellectual faith).

This is a quote from a sermon on contentment, not depression; and the book's really about spiritual discouragement, not depression, despite the title!

On depression, I'm sure MLJ would thoroughly agree with you - that God's Word is all you have to hold on to when God seems a million miles away. In fact, the main point of this book is that whatever we feel, we can still believe God's Word and speak to ourselves of his truth.

I reviewed the book here. And there might be a review of it by me coming up in The Briefing some time, I've just sent one in - keep your eyes peeled!