Thursday, May 20, 2010

Mid-Day Devotion 5/20/10

The Wedding Feast at Cana of Galilee, Anonymous, Christ the Savior Orthodox Church, Harrisburg, PA

C.H. Spurgeon: Morning and Evening
Morning – May 20th: Marvellous lovingkindness

“Show the wonder of your great love, you who save by your right hand those who take refuge in you from their foes.”
Psalm 17:7

When we give our hearts with our alms, we give well, but we must often plead to a failure in this respect. Not so our Master and our Lord. His favours are always performed with the love of His heart. He does not send to us the cold meat and the broken pieces from the table of His luxury, but He dips our morsel in His own dish, and seasons our provisions with the spices of His fragrant affections. When He puts the golden tokens of His grace into our palms, He accompanies the gift with such a warm pressure of our hand, that the manner of His giving is as precious as the boon itself. He will come into our houses upon His errands of kindness, and He will not act as some austere visitors do in the poor man's cottage, but He sits by our side, not despising our poverty, nor blaming our weakness. Beloved, with what smiles does He speak! What golden sentences drop from His gracious lips! What embraces of affection does He bestow upon us! If He had but given us farthings, the way of His giving would have gilded them; but as it is, the costly alms are set in a golden basket by His pleasant carriage. It is impossible to doubt the sincerity of His charity, for there is a bleeding heart stamped upon the face of all His benefactions. He giveth liberally and upbraideth not. Not one hint that we are burdensome to Him; not one cold look for His poor pensioners; but He rejoices in His mercy, and presses us to His bosom while He is pouring out His life for us. There is a fragrance in His spikenard which nothing but His heart could produce; there is a sweetness in His honey-comb which could not be in it unless the very essence of His soul's affection had been mingled with it. Oh! the rare communion which such singular heartiness effecteth! May we continually taste and know the blessedness of it!

Let us pray:

Hear O Lord as we lift our voices to You, let our cries come to Your ears, let our pleas rest upon Your righteousness.

May all strength, may all courage through the ordeals of this world be found amidst the glory of Your transcending love and Your encompassing mercy. May all hope be restored by the steadfast devotion that You make manifest in the lives of Your children.

So much of our joy is tempered O Lord. We are strengthened by the news of the two children released after 11 months in captivity, held by terrorists, yet we find ourselves heavy hearted as the news that the fate of their parents still remain undetermined while we receive news that their brother may have died at the hands of this ordeal. We rejoice at the release of the St. James Park as its crew may now return home, yet we are burdened by the fact that Pirates are made bolder by the ransom paid and the capture of the Greek Ship Eleni P.

For all that we hear that is good we are given the grim reminder that evil still lurks and unrighteousness still finds refuge in this world.

May vindication arise from Your hands that wickedness shall be set to flight and the lives of Your children shall be preserved. May freedom come through the power of Your Spirit and hope arise from Your hands as You look upon all who suffer amidst their present ordeal and give unto them all that they need to survive their present ordeal. May Your love be made manifest in their lives that, by Your merciful compassion they shall be set free, once more to return home that they may find healing amidst their life.

May, in all things, Your righteousness be made to stand as the everlasting testament of the glories of Your ways.

Then shall our hearts raise joyful songs and psalms of praise as we dwell in the encompassing love of Your transcending hope through all of our days.

In the name of Your Son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who lives and reigns with You in the Kingdom, one God, world without end, Amen.

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