March 25, 2009

A Seasoned Soul

I do not think that I have ever read anything (and I read a great deal) that so accurately sums up and expresses my very heart like the following:

It is not a sign of a seasoned Christian soul that steady joy is untinged with steady sorrow. Or to put it positively, the seasoned soul in Christ has a steady joy and a steady sorrow. They protect each other. Joy is protected from being flippant by steady sorrow. Sorrow is protected from being fatal by steady joy. And they intensify each other. Joy is made deeper by steady sorrow. Sorrow is made sweeter by steady joy.

For the seasoned Christian soul, I do not see how it can be otherwise while people are perishing and we are saved. I do not see how it can be otherwise while these two passages are written by the same inspired man:

I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh. (Romans 9:2-3)

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. (Philippians 4:4)

(John Piper - Desiring God Blog - March 25, 2009)


twofinches said...

I took my time and read this well. The quoted message is crafted so exquisitely that I had to catch my breath at its beauty before I could embrace its truth! But apart from John Piper, Paul gave me a punch to the spiritual gut. Would I be willing to give up my eternal life with Christ for another persons soul to be redeemed? I know that it would never be demanded of me but if it were...I can't even bear the thought of being cut from Christ! You gave me a lot to think about on both scores. Thank you for the post! BTW I see you became a follower of my blog...I put you on my blogroll as well. I know already I will be blessed by your deep thoughts.

TruthMatters said...

Yes - it was Paul who also was used by God to "give me a punch to the spiritual gut" when I first read that passage in Romans so many years ago--I remember asking myself that very same question that you asked yourself. But, O' that is love, is it not?

Powerful thoughts to ponder. We know so little of love in our finite and fallen (yet redeemed) state.

Anonymous said...

The Words spoken by Paul, Is the Spirit of Christ, as He gave Himself to suffer our just punishment and the Almighty wrath of God, that He might redeem us, who have been made partakers of flesh and are His kin according to the flesh. The same Spirit dwells within all the redeemed, and therefore, we would willing lay down our lives and suffer eternal punishment if it meant that millions and perhaps billions would spend eternity in the presence of our Beloved.

After all, we would be receiving our just dessert apart from His mercy and grace. Who am I that a King should bleed and die for, and if I could give up that which was not mine to give in the first place, that others might live .... I cannot even come close to comprehending the price that was paid on our behalf ....