We spent the previous week traveling, but in addition to my Bible I made sure that I had my "Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment" along with me (as well as Tim Keller's "The Reason for God"). During my reading this past week I made note of a few passages of importance, and list them below:
Those who are contented are fitted to receive mercy from the Lord. If you want a vessel to take in any liquor, you must hold it still for if the vessel stirs and shakes up and down, you cannot pour in anything, but you will say, 'Hold still', that you may pour it in and not lose any. So if we would be vessels to receive God's mercy, and would have the Lord pour his mercy into us, we must have quiet, still hearts. We must not have hearts hurrying up and down in trouble, discontent and vexing, but still and quiet hearts, if we receive mercy from the Lord. If a child throws and kicks up and down for a thing, you do not give it him when he cries so, but first you will have the child quiet. Even though, perhaps, you intend him to have what he cries for, you will not give it him till he is quiet, and comes, and stands still before you, and is contented without it, and then you will give it him. And truly so does the Lord deal with us, for our dealings with him are just as your froward children's are with you. As soon as you want a thing from God, if you cannot have it you are disquieted at once and all in an uproar, as it were, in your spirits. God intends mercy to you, but he says, 'You shall not have it yet, I will see you quiet first, and then in the quietness of your hearts come to me, and see what I will do with you.' (pg. 124)
Certainly our contentment does not consist in getting the thing we desire, but in God's fashioning our spirits to our conditions. (pg. 130)
So be satisfied and quiet, be contented with your contentment. I lack certain things that others have, but blessed be God, I have a contented heart which others have not. Then, I say, be content with your contentment, for it is a rich portion that the Lord has granted you. (pg. 132)
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