“Each of us needs to honestly face and seriously answer this question: How highly do I really value communion with Christ?…Christ has the first claims upon me. Do I realize this? Am I acting accordingly? Am I making it my chief concern to cultivate closer communion with Him? Am I—amidst all the problems, frictions, trials of this life— making Him my principal confident, counsellor, helper? Is it Him I am most seeking to please, honor, and glorify? If not, is it not high time that I did so?
…None but Christ can satisfy the heart, yet we are terribly slow in really believing it. We grasp at shadows, pursue phantoms, seek to feed on ashes, and then wonder why we are so miserable. God will not long allow His people to rest in things or find contentment in their circumstances. He it is Who both gives and takes away, Who gratifies or thwarts our wishes. We brought nothing into the world, and it is certain we shall carry nothing out of it (1Ti 6:7); therefore, there is nothing in the world which deserves a single anxious thought from us, for we shall soon be at the end of our journey through it.
…imagine that a certain thing would be very pleasant and profitable, and fancy that we cannot do without it; if we could but obtain it, we promise ourselves much satisfaction from it. If God grants it to us, do we not find that it is not what we expected?
We dream dreams, build air castles, live in many a fancied paradise, only to be bitterly disappointed. God’s purpose in those disappointments is to wean us from the world, to make us sick of it, to teach us that all down here is but “vanity and vexation of spirit” (Ecc 1:14).
O my reader, it would make much for our peace and blessedness if we committed the management of the whole of our affairs into the hands of Christ.
We need to continually pray Him to save us from having any will of our own, to work in us complete subjection to and satisfaction with His holy will.
By nature we are full of restlessness, covetousness, discontent—never satisfied with what we do have, ever lusting after what we do not have. But by grace we may live more happily than a prince, even though we possess nothing more down here than bare food and raiment: yea, [we] shall do so if we seek and find all our satisfaction in Christ alone.
Here is the key to the extraordinary history of Paul and Silas, Bunyan and Rutherford, Madame Guyon and many others. Why were they so contented and joyful while lying—some of them for many years—in prison? No doubt, God favored them with a double portion of His grace and comfort, yet the real explanation is that their hearts were completely absorbed with Christ.”
— A.W. Pink