I know I am not the only one to experience this, but it is a strange and wonderful gift that ofttimes when reading devotional literature on a daily basis we find that a certain day’s reading is exactly what we needed to hear for that day and at that time. I do not understand this kindness of God; I merely observe that it is true on a surprisingly frequent basis, particularly when things are not going well.
Things are not going well. I will spare the details, but my reading today took me to the twelfth chapter of book 2 of The Imitation of Christ. It was just what I needed to hear today. You may read it online here. I highly recommend it. It is not exactly an easy thing to read, but it is a profitable one because it helps me to put my troubles in the right perspective (that is to say, hopefully a Godly one). It is not hugely long, but it is too much to quote here, so please take a few minutes and read, especially if you are undergoing trials. May we together enjoy the Lord’s consolation in our difficulties, but if not, let us nevertheless remember this:
Count it all joy, my brethren, when you meet various trials, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. (James 1:2-4)
God loves us, even when things seem black. He loves us when we think that all we can do is stumble blindly in the darkness, when there is no light, when the way forward is shrouded in smothering glooms and we do not know which way to go. God loves us.