“How Kindly He Has Thwarted Me”
This morning we had a great Men’s Bible Study in Genesis 22, the passage where God commands Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac.
Today, thinking of the times God interrupted Abraham’s track in life by calling him to leave his homeland in Ur, asking him to circumcise all in his household, then commanding him to “send the bondwoman away”, and then to sacrifice his son.
His will was more difficult at first but more blessed after.
Robert Murray M'Cheyne
It was said of Robert Murray M'Cheyne, the great 19th century Scottish preacher, that "his soul was prepared for ministry...by much affliction in his person, by inward trials and sore temptations, by understanding the depth of corruption in his own heart, and by discoveries of the Savoir's fullness of grace."
In response to one of these trials at age 22, M'Cheyne wrote in verse:
He tenderly binds up the broken in heart,
The soul bowed down he will raise;
For mourning the ointment of joy will impart,
For heaviness, garments of praise.
Ah, come, then, and sing to the praise of our God,
Who giveth and taketh away;
Who first by his kindness, and then by his rod,
Would teach us, poor sinners, to pray.
For in the assembly of Jesus' first-born,
Who anthems of gratitude raise;
Each heart has by great tribulation been torn,
Each voice turned from wailing to praise.
M'Cheyne concluded: "How kindly has God thwarted me, so that I might learn to glory in disappointments."