Sunday, May 17, 2009

MacDonald: the devotion of God

May 17, 2009

    Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee. But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.
    -- Matthew 16:22-23 (KJV)

    God is ever seeking to get down to us—to be the divine man in us. And we are ever saying, “That be far from Thee, Lord!” We are careful, in our unbelief, over the divine dignity, of which He is too grand to think. Better pleasing to God ... is the audacity of Job, who, rushing into His presence, and flinging the door of His presence-chamber to the wall, like a troubled—it may be angry—but yet faithful child, calls aloud in the ear of Him whose perfect Fatherhood he has yet to learn, “Am I a sea or a whale, that Thou settest a watch over me?”... The devotion of God to His creatures is perfect; He does not think about Himself, but about them; He wants nothing for Himself, but finds His blessedness in the outgoing of blessedness. Ah! it is a terrible—shall it be a lonely glory, this? We will draw near with our human response, our abandonment of self in the faith of Jesus. He gives Himself to us—shall we not give ourselves to Him? Shall we not give ourselves to each other whom He loves?
    ... George MacDonald (1824-1905), “The Child in the Midst,” Unspoken Sermons, Series One [1867] (see the book)

Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, grant me the grace to give myself.

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