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"In Every Circumstance" (posted January 1, 2003)
Preserve me, O God, for in You I put my trust.
- Psalm 16:1
Always, every moment, under every circumstance, it is God "with whom we have to do" (Hebrews 4:13, KJV). People who are ever looking at second causes are led into practical infidelity; and so it is in measure with the saint of God. If he is resting in circumstances, he loses the sense of having to do with God.
When once we come really to know God, we know Him as love. Then, knowing that everything comes to us from Him, though we be in a desert--no matter where, or what the circumstances--we interpret all by His love. I may be called on to pass though pain, and sorrow, and trial, as part of His discipline; but everything that comes from God comes from a source and spring in which I have confidence. I look, through the circumstances, to Him; and nothing can separate me from His love (Romans 8:38-39).
Is it not quite true that we often stop, practically, at the circumstances in which we find ourselves placed, and consider only our feelings and judgment about them? That with which we should be occupied is, not the circumstances, but what God intends by them.
There may be some secret evil (one of the ten thousand things that, if indulged, would hinder the enjoyment of God) working in my heart, and yet I remain unconscious of it. Well, God sends some circumstance that discovers to me the evil, in order that it may be put away. Is not this a blessing? The circumstance does not create the evil which it excites; it only acts upon what it finds to be in my heart, and makes it manifest. The evil being discovered, circumstances are all forgotten--God's end alone is seen.
If there are circumstances that try and perplex our hearts, let us just say, "It is God with whom I have to do; and what is He about with me?" The moment the heart is brought into the recognition of God's presence, all is done--it submits. The soul finds itself in communion with Him about the circumstances.
John N. Darby