I found a small, tattered little book on top of the old organ at church this evening. It was only about the size of a 3×5 index card and about an inch thick. Its brown fabric cover was worn to the point where I couldn’t read the title on the binding, so I opened it at random, and read:
“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.” I shall be content alike with what He appoints or withholds. I cannot wrong that love with one shadow of suspicion! I have His own plighted promise of unchanging faithfulness, that “all things work together for good to them that love Him!” Often there are earthly sorrows hard to bear; –the unkind accusation, when it was least merited or expected;–the estrangement of tried and trusted friends, the failure of cherished hopes, favourite schemes broken up, plans of usefulness demolished, the gourd breeding its own worm and withering. “Commit thy cause and thy way to God!” We little know what tenderness there is in the blast of the rough wind; what “needs be” are folded under the wings of the storm! “All is well,” because all is from Him. “events are God’s,” says Rutherford; “let Him sit at His own helm, that moderateth all.” Christian! look back on your chequered path. How wondrously has He threaded you through the mazy way–disappointing your fears, realizing your hopes! Are evils looming through the mists of the future? Do not anticipate the trials of to-morrow, to aggravate those of to-day. Leave the morrow with Him, who has promised, “by casting all your care on Him, to care for you.” No affliction will be sent greater than you can bear. His voice will be heard stealing from the bosom of the threatening cloud, “Be still and know that I am God!”
“My Father!” With such a word, you can stretch out your neck for any yoke; as with Israel of old He will make those very waves that may now be so threatening, a fenced wall on every side! “Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him.” “In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths!”
The Mind and Words of Jesus; and the Faithful Promiser, by the Rev. J.R. Macduff, D.D. 1878. Pages 113-116.
Immediately other words sprang to mind. Penned even earlier that The Mind and Words of Jesus, the words to the hymn “He Leadeth Me” forced their way into my mind:
He leadeth me, O blessed thought!
O words with heav’nly comfort fraught!
Whate’er I do, where’er I be
Still ’tis God’s hand that leadeth me.
He leadeth me, He leadeth me,
By His own hand He leadeth me;
His faithful foll’wer I would be,
For by His hand He leadeth me.
Sometimes ’mid scenes of deepest gloom,
Sometimes where Eden’s bowers bloom,
By waters still, o’er troubled sea,
Still ’tis His hand that leadeth me.
Lord, I would place my hand in Thine,
Nor ever murmur nor repine;
Content, whatever lot I see,
Since ’tis my God that leadeth me.
And when my task on earth is done,
When by Thy grace the vict’ry’s won,
E’en death’s cold wave I will not flee,
Since God through Jordan leadeth me.
Have a listen: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D77Vy3LfZc4