Friday, January 16, 2015

Missionary David Brainerd's Helpful Perspective

Maintaining the right perspective in life and in pastoral ministry is very important (note 2 Corinthians 4:16-18).   This is one of the reasons why studying Church history and why reading Christian biographies is so helpful.

Consider for example this helpful quote by David Brainerd.  "It is good for me to have endured these trials and have seen little to no success."

This reminds me of the Psalmist in Psalm 119:71, "It was good for me that I was afflicted that I might learn your statutes."  

During seasons of life when disappointments seem to mount and where little ministry fruit is found it is good to recite songs like "Be Still My Soul."  I have recently enjoyed this contemporary version of the classic hymn,"Be Still, My Soul."

1. Be still, my soul; the Lord is on thy side;
Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain;
Leave to thy God to order and provide;
In every change He faithful will remain
Be still, my soul; thy best, thy heavenly, Friend
Through thorny ways leads to a joyful end

2. Be still, my soul; thy God doth undertake
To guide the future as He has the past.
Thy hope, thy confidence, let nothing shake;
All now mysterious shall be bright at last.
Be still, my soul; the waves and winds still know
His voice who ruled them while He dwelt below

3. Be still, my soul, though dearest friends depart
And all is darkened in the vale of tears;
Then shalt thou better know His love, His heart,
Who comes to soothe thy sorrows and thy fears.
Be still, my soul; thy Jesus can repay
From His own fulness all He takes away.

4. Be still, my soul; the hour is hastening on
When we shall be forever with the Lord,
When disappointment, grief, and fear are gone,
Sorrow forgot, love's purest joys restored.
Be still, my soul; when change and tears are past,
All safe and blessed we shall meet at last