These excerpts from The Desire of Ages (“The Call by the Sea“) stood out to me today:
During the sad night on the lake, when they were separated from Christ, the disciples were pressed hard by unbelief, and weary with fruitless toil. But his presence kindled their faith, and brought them joy and success. So it is with us; apart from Christ, our work is fruitless, and it is easy to distrust and murmur. But when He is near, and we labor under His direction, we rejoice in the evidence of His power. It is Satan’s work to discourage the soul; it is Christ’s work to inspire with faith and hope. (p. 249)
They were humble and unlearned men, those fishers of Galilee; but Christ, the light of the world, was abundantly able to qualify them for the position for which He had chosen them. The Saviour did not despise education; for when controlled by the love of God, and devoted to His service, intellectual culture is a blessing. But He passed by the wise men of His time, because they were so self-confident that they could not sympathize with suffering humanity, and become colaborers with the Man of Nazareth. (p. 249)
He who loves Christ the most will do the greatest amount of good. There is no limit to the usefulness of one who, by putting self aside, makes room for the working of the Holy Spirit upon his heart, and lives a life wholly consecrated to God. If men will endure the necessary discipline, without complaining or fainting by the way, God will teach them hour by hour, and day by day. (pp. 250-251)
- When have you been discouraged in your work? How did Jesus rekindle your faith and hope?
- When has God used you to inspire faith and hope in others?
- Has self-confidence ever hindered your activism efforts?
- God’s teaching is on-going, “hour by hour, and day by day.” What have you learned this week or this month?
- What discipline have you endured, and how did it prepare you for better service for the kingdom, for “suffering humanity”?