Tried by the World

I pray not that Thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that Thou shouldest keep them from the evil. – John 17:15

The world often tries us as with fire, and the things which we reckoned to be gold and silver perish in the ordeal since they are but counterfeit, but we are gainers by such a loss. In the world our temper is tried, and too often we become irritated. What then? Why just this; if sanctification has regulated our emotions, patience will have her perfect work, and charity will suffer long; but if we are soon angry and find it hard to forgive, let us not so much find fault with those who try us as with ourselves, because we cannot bear the ordeal. Our pride must go down, we must become slow to wrath, we must be content to be as our Lord, the meek and lowly Savior. These irritations show us how far we are from the model and should excite in us a desire for progress towards His complete image.

Do not worldly men in some cases frighten professors out of their testimony for Christ? I mean, has it never happened that our cheek has blanched, and our tongue failed us in the presence of cavilers, and blasphemers, and sceptics, and have we not been silent when we ought to have avowed our Lord? That also shows how cowardly we are at heart, and how cold is our love. We are to blame for not having more courage; for if we were strong in the Lord and in the power of His might, as we ought to be, we should be ready to go with Christ to prison and to death, and never think of shunning His service…God over-rules for good the evilness of men against the truth. Besides, do not ungodly men drive us from loving the world! We might think of finding our rest here below, but when we hear their tongues cruelly and unkindly slandering us, there we are sick of their company. ~ C.H. Spurgeon

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