Category - Devotional
Humanity, one and all, are a bruised reed and smoking flax. It is not until the pain makes us desperate for mercies outside ourselves we will not call out to the only name given among men, by which we must be saved!
So writes Richard Sibbes:
"The bruised reed is a man that for the most part is in some misery, as those were that came to Christ for help, and by misery he is brought to see sin as the cause of it, for, whatever pretences sin makes, they come to an end when we are bruised and broken. He is sensible of sin and misery, even unto bruising; and, seeing no help in himself, is carried with restless desire to have supply from another, with some hope, which a little raises him out of himself to Christ, though he dare not claim any present interest of mercy. This spark of hope being opposed by doubtings and fears rising from corruption makes him as smoking flax; so that both these together, a bruised reed and smoking flax, make up the state of a poor distressed man.
We pray with fear and trembling for our beloved and every soul we truly care about:
"O Father, be as gentle as Thou canst, but as vexing as is necessary to bruise my beloved so they will seek Thee for what Thou alone has to offer, the spring of life in salvation."
How can we pray our cherished ones be bruised and smoking? We know, from the gracious words of our Lord and Savior, who in our turn bruised us to seek His grace:
"For whoever wishes to save his life shall lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel's shall save it. 36 "For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world, and forfeit his soul? 37 "For what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?
Despite the sorrows that perhaps lay ahead for our beloved, as the prince of preachers said:
"If sinners be damned, at least let them leap to Hell over our dead bodies. And if they perish, let them perish with our arms wrapped about their knees, imploring them to stay. If Hell must be filled, let it be filled in the teeth of our exertions, and let not one go unwarned and unprayed for."
"What a man is on his knees before God, that he is and nothing more."
Robert Murray M'Cheyne
Assistant Editor: Seven Jefferson Gossard
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All our Scripture quotes are drawn from the NASB 1977 edition.
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