love thy neighbor (linked post)...being content
"Thou shalt love thy neighbour."
"Love thy neighbour." Perhaps he rolls in riches, and thou art poor, and living in thy little cot side-by-side with his lordly mansion; thou seest every day his estates, his fine linen, and his sumptuous banquets; God has given him these gifts, covet not his wealth, and think no hard thoughts concerning him. Be content with thine own lot, if thou canst not better it, but do not look upon thy neighbour, and wish that he were as thyself. Love him, and then thou wilt not envy him.
Perhaps, on the other hand, thou art rich, and near thee reside the poor. Do not scorn to call them neighbour. Own that thou art bound to love them. The world calls them thy inferiors. In what are they inferior? They are far more thine equals than thine inferiors, for "God hath made of one blood all people that dwell upon the face of the earth." It is thy coat which is better than theirs, but thou art by no means better than they. They are men, and what art thou more than that? Take heed that thou love thy neighbour even though he be in rags, or sunken in the depths of poverty.
But, perhaps, you say, "I cannot love my neighbours, because for all I do they return ingratitude and contempt." So much the more room for the heroism of love. Wouldst thou be a feather-bed warrior, instead of bearing the rough fight of love? He who dares the most, shall win the most; and if rough be thy path of love, tread it boldly, still loving thy neighbours through thick and thin. Heap coals of fire on their heads, and if they be hard to please, seek not to please them, but to please thy Master; and remember if they spurn thy love, thy Master hath not spurned it, and thy deed is as acceptable to him as if it had been acceptable to them. Love thy neighbor, for in so doing thou art following the footsteps of Christ."
This might be one of my favorite devotionals. The gift the Lord gave Mr. Spurgeon in his ability to write so eloquently and with such truth touches my heart.
Thinking on this devotional...remembering to be content where you are at (no you don't have to stay there, but if that is where you are to be, be content) and you are not better than anyone else. The Lord has a plan for each of us and a refining process, and He knows just how to get to those weak, unfruitful areas in our lives. We praise Him through it all. Isn't that what we are called to do? To love and worship Him. Paul praised Him with little and much. He praised Him in the most beautiful of places and in the pits of prison. Can't I do the same? Yes, by His grace and mercy. He has shown me so much this winter...weak areas, prideful areas and more of who He is and how I can trust Him. I am humbled and thankful. I am praying we are going into a restful season, it's not easier but more of a time feeling a bit more secure financially. No matter what though, I know His provision, faithfulness and grace is sufficient for this mama. I love my Father with all my heart!
Praying your day is blessed!