We walk by faith. Faith overcomes the world. We live by faith. Faith is the work of God. By faith are we saved. This we know.
Now there is much ado made about love, joy, peace and works. But the thing that is striking is that with faith in the trial of the saints is mentioned none of those but patience. “Here is the patience and faith of the saints” (Rev. 13:10). Less is said about patience but this patience is the virtue of all virtues coupled with faith. The Lord teaches us to wait.
I once saw a man
Sitting in a chair on his veranda.
His feet were raised up and resting on a rail,
His eyes pegged on the road ahead.
He seemed to be waiting
With longing and hope.
He was alone and didn’t like it much,
And waited for someone to come.
Time passed on…and on…and on.
I looked again and saw
The prairie without life, as before,
The house, the veranda, and chair;
I saw the feet on the rail,
The figure was still there
But no flesh was left, only dust and bones
And cloth and cobwebs and hair.
Lord, why must we wait so long
For promises to be fulfilled?
Soon I begin to think and feel
That these promises were only imagined
Or that I have failed somehow.
I begin to think of that man
Who waited with hope in vain.
Will this be my lot? Am I that man?
My heart sick with hope deferred?
Will I turn to dust as that lonely soul,
Feeding on empty dreams?
But no, this is the patience and faith of the saints
Who are called to trust and to hope.
So we wait and accept the delay.
The man had no promise,
His hopes were in vain,
And he perished, not knowing the truth.
But we know the truth.
We know what we know because we have heard
And believe the One Who is true.
Lethbridge, Sept. 30, 1984
The ways and thoughts of the spirit of the Lord are far higher than man is ever willing to acknowledge or can imagine. This work had the crucible of a man with above average intellect who was rather impressed with his powers as well as impressive. What a blessing it would be to see a man set aside his strengths both real and perceived and take on the "weakness" of Christ. I have yet to see a man of high intellect do so. But isn't it written that God chooses the foolish things to confound the wise? Men dwell on different planes. There are those who are subterranean, Less than animals; They will not use even their bodies as they ought. There are those who dwell on lower ground, Their bodies they use acceptably well But no more can they receive. Then there are those who have taken to the hills. They have sought the higher ground Of mind and intellectual things. And with the powers of mind Both given and honed, They have awesome works achieved. Yet there is higher ground still. There are snow-capped peaks of the spirit Where the air is cold and thin, Where the traveler is rare, Where few would care to come, Yet the vista is supreme. Satisfied with the planes below, Ignorant of the plane above, Each on his own level thinks There is nothing better, nothing more. Come up higher, man. You've a long way you can go. But put aside the weights of assumptions, Vanities, arrogance. Put away pride and foolis...
Little did I know when the Lord told me He would show me His people through His eyes that I was one of those people, that I would be shown not only by seeing as an observer but as partaker as well. And He too is a partaker of the sufferings of His people. “I am hurting, I am hurting!” He said to me. I know too well the pain, the death and hell we must all face, the iniquity we must be shown in ourselves and be purged of by fires. I have identified and do identify with His people. I just did not think, though I surely believed I was His, that I was, by nature, a partaker of all the sins and vanities of His people and therefore a partaker of the fruits of them as well. When the Lord shows one something, He shows him not by mere observation but subjection. Only then do we know and understand and relate. One day while praying quite dignified, I was forced to be relieved, And in an old cabin the Lord signified what in me He had conceived. I will show you My people by My eyes, their suffering and sorrow you’ll see; They live in weeping and gnashing and cries but proclaim that they are free. In their stoves burns no fire to give them heat, the wind blows through the walls; From broken glasses and plates they eat, and off its hinges the front door falls. Their power is void while idols abound; vain professions are on their tongue; No floor ‘neath their feet covers the ground, their possessions are no more than dung. These are His people the Lord lets me see,...
Social and moral issues abound. There is no want of them – ever. And rarely are they settled to the true benefit of all. Debate goes on and on and on. The minds involved grow deeper in darkness until, with all their statistics and evidences, arguments and logic, all sides are as raving mad men, utterly failing to put their finger on the problem, much less finding a solution for it. This writing came quite spontaneously and basically expresses the truth that darkened evil minds must be given the right and the opportunity to suffer the fruits of their thinking. Their consequences will speak far louder than the voices of those who try to spare them their folly. Abort the mark of tragedy; Abort the evidence of pleasure; Abort the stark reminder Of consequence for evil. Rid yourself of nuisance; Rid yourself of cost; Pay no mind but to yourself; For your sake a life is lost. Still the witness, erase the interruption, Forget the past, if you can; Still the conscience For crying against your deeds. Is the conscience in your womb? Rather than removing the turd, Cover it with a mound of manure. Now what? But go and do your will, woman; Exterminate your seed Lest we be overwhelmed With the fruits of your ways, The posterity of your thoughts; Haunted by mammoth mounds, Perishing one and all. Lethbridge, Aug. 19, 1984