We Repent…

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From my husband’s blog today. Please consider joining with us to pray for our nation.

We Repent….

If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land…. 2 Chronicles 7:14 (KJV)

It is no secret that things are tough all over. From natural droughts to economic droughts, times are definitely challenging.

Recently, we have been in a several situations where well-meaning Christian friends invoked this verse, and began to pray that God would bless, protect, and heal our nation.  They sincerely believed that they were being obedient to God’s Word and that God would honor their request to heal our land, but never once was there any mention of repentance.

However, this verse instructs us to repent on behalf of our nation.  God’s Word says that if we repent, He will handle the healing.  The Word of God gives us an example of this passage in action.  In Daniel 9, we see God’s pattern of repentance for the sins of a people and a nation.  Daniel repented for his nation and for the covenant people of that day.

In today’s season, to follow this example, we would need to repent on behalf of our church and our nation.  I implore you to repent individually, on behalf of God’s people, and on behalf of our nation.

There is no possibility that this land will be healed and our people restored, unless we as God’s covenant people, are willing to repent for our individual sins, the sins of the church, and the sins of our nation and its leaders.  The situation is dire.  Without repentance and the divine intervention of the mercy of God, judgment will fall.  We must cry out for the mercy of the Lord: that we be given time, strength, and resources to bring in the harvest; that God will stay His Hand, giving us grace to be faithful in this effort, using time wisely and to great effect.

Please join me in this prayer for our nation:

Father, we come to you in the name of Jesus. Not by our works or our own righteousness, but by Your great mercy and love in forgiving us and calling us into your Kingdom.

Father, we repent for failing to honor You and Your Word above the word of the world and those around us.

We repent for loving leisure more than we have loved you.  We repent for loving our sports events and entertainment more than we have loved Your Word and fellowship with Your people.

We repent for not holding ourselves accountable to perform your Word by being obedient to it in every area of our everyday lives.

Forgive us for being more concerned about our comfort than the eternal souls of our friends and co-workers.

Forgive us for not being willing to stand up for what we know to be true at home, at work, at church, and in our nation.

Father, we repent for the innocent blood that has been shed throughout this land.  Millions of babies have been murdered, and most of us have been unwilling to stand up and be counted, in any way, to defend the lives of these innocent ones.  Forgive us, Lord, for this foul evil in our land. Restore the sanctity of life to our hearts and our nation.

Father, we repent for calling evil “good” and good “evil”.  Forgive us for our unwillingness to call evil, what you have called evil; for not presenting your saving grace as the only antidote to evil and the destruction that sin leaves behind in everything it touches.

Father, we ask you to forgive us for our unwillingness to hold our elected officials accountable as Your servants. Father, restore to our land those faithful servants who will stand for righteousness and integrity; those who will not use the public office they hold as a chance to feather their own nest.

Father, we repent for the many times we have spent the incredible resources you have given to us on our own pleasures; not putting your Kingdom first in every area of our lives, including our spending.  We repent for stealing the tithe from You. We repent for not using the resources You have given to us to support ministries You have ordained to spread Your Word to every corner of the earth.

We repent for being more concerned at church with superficial relationships and other matters, rather than the spiritual health of our brothers and sisters in Christ.

Father, we fall on our faces and repent.

Father, have mercy upon us and give us one more chance to produce the fruit worthy of repentance for your Kingdom.

Amen.

Copyright © 2011 by Charles L. Johnson
All rights reserved

Adventures In Civil Justice

“You shall appoint judges and officers in all your gates, which the LORD your God gives you, according to your tribes, and they shall judge the people with just judgment. You shall not pervert justice; you shall not show partiality, nor take a bribe, for a bribe blinds the eyes of the wise and twists the words of the righteous.”  Deuteronomy 16:18-19 (NKJV)

A week ago today, I reported to U.S. District court for jury duty. I have received jury summons in the past, but never to a federal court, and I never had to actually show up before. As this was a new experience, I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect. As juror number 51,  I felt that there was a reasonable chance of being chosen for something.

After checking in with the registrar at the desk, I received my packet of information about the day’s proceedings and sat down to wait for entrance into the juror assembly room. There was a lot of waiting that day; this was just the first of it.

At the magic hour of 8 a.m., those of us who had arrived and assembled, filed into a large room with many chairs. I would guess the room probably seated about two hundred, but the roughly thirty of us who were there, spread out all over the room in silence.  We proceeded to sit down and then wait some more. At the front of the room was a podium and included on the walls were the required elements to show everyone that this was a federal court. There was a spirit of solemnity in the room; the sense that we were about to do something really important and we should not be jovial about it.

About fifteen minutes after we entered the room, a gentleman walked up to the podium, proceeded to welcome us, and began to explain the paperwork we had received when we checked in.  We were told that, whether we were chosen or not, we remained “on call” for a total of six working days and were required each evening, after 6 p.m., to call or check online to find out whether or not we would be needed the next day.

Next, we filled out our “Expense Reimbursement Form.”  I knew that jurors received a small stipend, with reimbursement of expenses, so I was expecting this. After filling out all the required forms and handing them in, we were told that we would be watching a short orientation film about jury service. So far, so good.  I expected the usual patriotic type of video with many references to how we were serving our country and how we were part of the process of justice.  In that, the film was about what I expected. However, there was a strong, but subtle, attitude of condescension that ran through out it. The film included lengthy remarks by two Supreme Court justices, Chief Justice John Roberts and retired Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.

This condescending attitude did not come from Chief Justice Roberts, but rather Sandra Day O’Connor. She said all the right words, of course, but the attitude was decidedly elitist.  I should have expected that, but I didn’t.  I also expected the video to have high production values, but it didn’t. You would think that with all the money the U.S. government spends every year, a really good quality film for jurors would have been easy to accomplish. And yet, it wasn’t.  They lost a powerful opportunity to emotionally enlist everyone in that room using patriotic fervor. Instead of feeling good about service to my country and the process of justice, I felt vaguely disquieted, as if I was somehow being laughed at. I don’t know if others in the room felt the same way. Very few of us said more than a word or two to each other.  The whole process was not exactly conducive to social conviviality.

Prior to my arrival that day, I had made the assumption that juries would be chosen for multiple trials. This proved to be incorrect. Of the roughly thirty people who actually reported along with me that day, only twenty were chosen for voir dire. Those twenty appeared to be numbers one through twenty on the juror list. There were no questions, no nothing; they just called the first twenty. One trial, one jury (or to be more precise, one jury plus alternates).

After those twenty were called and given their juror numbers, we were told that all of us had to wait until the selected jurors were called upstairs to court. Then, those remaining would be dismissed as soon as it was determined that the first twenty would be able to serve.

While we were waiting, they did something that actually shocked me: they began handing out our expense reimbursement checks. I never expected that. I had fully expected those checks would be mailed to us after an appropriately inefficient amount of time. The federal government was actually exhibiting efficiency at something that didn’t involve taking money from me.

Obviously, my personal bias is clear here. In general, I have little trust in government bureaucrats. Generally, I have found them to be inefficient and less than helpful, with a penchant for enjoying the power they wield over those of us not included in their exalted ranks. Frustration has been more the rule than the exception in my past experiences with government employees.

After the chosen jurors were called upstairs, the rest of us sat around and waited some more until we were told that we were dismissed for the day (with renewed instructions that we were required to call or check each evening about the following day).

All in all, the entire experience was vaguely disappointing. I have no idea which trial those jurors were selected for, and I will never know. I am glad, however, that I only lost one working day to the process and am not going to have to decide someone’s fate based on a legal system that currently has, what I believe to be, some serious flaws.

Statistically speaking, at some future point in time, I will likely be called to jury duty again, and that time I may well be chosen. I imagine I will be just as conflicted about serving then as I was this time. One thing I do know for certain, while our civil justice system has its flaws, God’s system of justice does not.  We may be able to manipulate and pervert the judicial system here, but there is no way to escape God’s justice system. His love, mercy, and grace are sure; so is His justice.

“For I proclaim the name of the LORD: ascribe greatness to our God. He is the Rock, His work is perfect; for all His ways are justice, a God of truth and without injustice; righteous and upright is He.” Deuteronomy 32:3-4 (NKJV)

Original Content: Copyright © 2011 by Susan E. Johnson
All rights reserved

Bits Of Billy Sunday

Below are a few pithy quotes from Billy Sunday.  I have often stated that, “Sitting in church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than sitting in a garage makes you a car.”  I had no idea that this had its origins in a quote by Billy Sunday. Billy Sunday, by what little I have read, had an interesting life.  I would guess that his greatest disappointment was in the fact that his children did not live and walk in the faith that he held so tightly to. The heartbreak must have been profound for a man who did not mince words about the results of sin.

I hope that you will find much wisdom in these quotes below. They reminded me that, no matter what generation we are born into, the effect of sin on our lives is the same. We can dress it up, call it by another name, but sin is still sin, with the same predictable results.

“If you don’t do your part, don’t blame God.”

“More men fail through lack of purpose than lack of talent.”

“The backslider likes the preaching that wouldn’t hit the side of a house, while the real disciple is delighted when the truth brings him to his knees.”

“There are some so-called Christian homes today with books on the shelves of the library that have no more business there than a rattler crawling about on the floor, or a poison within the child’s reach.”

“Personal liberty is not personal license.”

“Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than going to a garage makes you an automobile.”

“Live so that when the final summons comes you will leave something more behind you than an epitaph on a tombstone or an obituary in a newspaper.”

“Not to walk in the straight and narrow way yourself, is to give the devil the biggest kind of a chance to get our children.”

“We have a God who delights in impossibilities.”

“Hell is the highest reward that the devil can offer you for being a servant of his.”

“God likes a little humor, as is evidence by the fact that he made the monkeys, the parrot — and some of you people.”

“There are two hundred and fifty-six names given in the Bible for the Lord Jesus Christ, and I suppose this was because He was infinitely beyond all that any one name could express.”

“I believe that a long step toward public morality will have been taken when sins are called by their right names.”

“There is more power in a mother’s hand than in a king’s scepter.”

“If you want to drive the devil out of the world, hit him with a cradle instead of a crutch.”

“Temptation is the devil looking through the keyhole. Yielding is opening the door and inviting him in.”

“The inconsistency is not in the Bible, but in your life.”

Copyright © 2011 by Susan E. Johnson
All rights reserved

Rules Kids Won’t Learn In School

Similar versions of these rules have floated around the internet for a while. Since 2000, they have erroneously been attributed to Bill Gates of Microsoft fame, but he didn’t write them. It is my understanding that these basic rules were, in some form, originally part of an OP ED piece written by Charles J. Sykes and printed in the San Diego Union Tribune in September, 1996. They are now part of a published and much longer list, which I have not read, but would heartily recommend based on what I have included below.

You will have to mentally adjust some of the specific examples in order to reflect today’s popular culture and inflation-ridden economics. But, the basic truths below remain as applicable today as they were then. In fact, my parents taught me these same things, although not in the same words, when I was growing up in the 1950s, 1960s, and early 1970s.  I would guess that today’s teens will not like these truths any better than I did at their age.  My parents were right though. Bless them for having the wisdom and courage to speak the truth to me even when it wasn’t pleasant, and I didn’t want to hear it.

It is a great encouragement to me that within the homeschooling community, some of the problems we so often see in an age-segregated, school-based educational system, seem to be less common-place. It may have to do with the simple fact that mothers who spend all day with their children are less likely to tolerate bad behavior when confronted with it all day, every day.  Funny how that works. . .

Our principal job as parents is to give our children the tools and skills they will need to successfully navigate their way into adulthood. We do them no favors by coddling them and continually excusing their bad behavior. When we hold them to a higher standard, we give them the structure to stand confidently, independently in a world that cares little about how they feel.  We give them a gift far greater than any electronic gadget or new car. We help them to understand that the world doesn’t revolve around them and their self-esteem or their desires. We show our love most when we tolerate their whining, spoiled, “sense of entitlement” behavior least.

You might guess that this is a subject I feel somewhat strongly about. You would be right. My heartfelt thanks to Mr. Sykes for his work and the truth it represents.

Here are the rules:

Some Rules Kids Won’t Learn In School

Unfortunately, there are some things that children should be learning in school, but don’t. Not all of them have to do with academics. As a modest back-to-school offering, here are some basic rules that may not have found their way into the standard curriculum.

Rule No. 1: Life is not fair. Get used to it. The average teen-ager uses the phrase, “It’s not fair,” 8.6 times a day. You got it from your parents, who said it so often you decided they must be the most idealistic generation ever. When they started hearing it from their own kids, they realized Rule No. 1.

Rule No. 2: The real world won’t care as much about your self-esteem as your school does. It’ll expect you to accomplish something before you feel good about yourself. This may come as a shock. Usually, when inflated self-esteem meets reality, kids complain it’s not fair. (See Rule No. 1)

Rule No. 3: Sorry, but you won’t make $40,000 a year right out of high school. And you won’t be a vice president or have a car phone either. You may even have to wear a uniform that doesn’t have a Gap label.

Rule No. 4: If you think your teacher is tough, wait ’til you get a boss. He doesn’t have tenure, so he tends to be a bit edgier. When you screw up, he’s not going to ask you how you feel about it.

Rule No. 5: Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your grandparents had a different word for burger-flipping. They called it “opportunity.” They weren’t embarrassed to be making minimum wage either. They would have been embarrassed to sit around talking about Kurt Cobain all weekend.

Rule No. 6: It’s not your parents’ fault. If you screw up, you are responsible. This is the flip side of “It’s my life,” and “You’re not the boss of me,” and other eloquent proclamations of your generation. When you turn 18, it’s on your dime. Don’t whine about it, or you’ll sound like a Baby Boomer.

Rule No. 7: Before you were born your parents weren’t as boring as they are now. They got that way paying your bills, cleaning up your room and listening to you tell them how idealistic you are. And by the way, before you save the rain forest from the blood-sucking parasites of your parent’s generation, try delousing the closet in your bedroom.

Rule No. 8: Your school may have done away with winners and losers. Life hasn’t. In some schools, they’ll give you as many times as you want to get the right answer. Failing grades have been abolished and class valedictorians scrapped, lest anyone’s feelings be hurt. Effort is as important as results. This, of course, bears not the slightest resemblance to anything in real life. (See Rule No. 1, Rule No. 2, and Rule No. 4)

Rule No. 9: Life is not divided into semesters, and you don’t get summers off. Not even Easter break. They expect you to show up every day: for eight hours. And you don’t get a new life every 10 weeks. It just goes on and on. While we’re at it, very few jobs are interested in fostering your self-expression or helping you find yourself. Fewer still lead to self-realization. (See Rule No. 1 and Rule No. 2.)

Rule No. 10: Television is not real life. Your life is not a sitcom. Your
problems will not all be solved in 30 minutes, minus time for commercials. In real life, people actually have to leave the coffee shop to go to jobs. Your friends will not be as perky or pliable as Jennifer Aniston.

Rule No. 11: Be nice to nerds. You may end up working for them. We all could.

Rule No. 12:  Smoking does not make you look cool. It makes you look moronic. Next time you’re out cruising, watch an 11-year-old with a butt in his mouth. That’s what you look like to anyone over 20. Ditto for “expressing yourself” with purple hair and/or pierced body parts.

Rule No. 13: You are not immortal. (See Rule No. 12.) If you are under the impression that living fast, dying young, and leaving a beautiful corpse is romantic, you obviously haven’t seen one of your peers at room temperature lately.

Rule No. 14: Enjoy this while you can. Sure parents are a pain, school’s a bother, and life can be depressing. But someday you’ll realize how wonderful it was to be a kid. Maybe you should start now.

You’re welcome.

By Charles J. Sykes

“Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6 (NKJV)

Copyright © 2011 by Susan E. Johnson
All rights reserved

Bits Of Leonard Ravenhill

Leonard Ravenhill is a name that I have only recently become familiar with. He was a close friend of A.W. Tozer and you will find much of the same wisdom in both men. I am hearing a clarion call around the world for men and women, who have long been asleep in their faith, to wake up from their slumber. These words below, hold us to a higher standard of faith and practice. We could do no less for our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

“A Roman Catholic priest startled us not very long ago by saying that for 25 years he had been sitting in the confessional, listening to the confessions of men and women. He said he heard (of) murders, rapes, adultery, and fornication. He met men and women who have broken every law of God and man with repetition. But never in 25 years had anyone ever confessed to being covetous. Covetousness! We wrap it up and call it ambition. We may call it business or something, but right down in the middle of those things is a rotten word called “covetousness.” Paul called it idolatry!”

I’m sick to death of the so-called Christianity of our day. What’s supernatural about it? When do people come out of the sanctuary awed and can’t speak for an hour because God has been in glory there? Dear God, as soon as they get out, they’re talking football, or sports or something or there’s going to be a big sale downtown or somewhere. We are not caught up into eternity!”

“God is taking His hands off of America. We’ve had so much light and we’ve rejected it.”

“I believe every church is either supernatural or superficial. I don’t believe there’s any middle ground.”

“In the early church, signs and wonders, and miracles followed. They cast out demons, blindness, and paralysis. That’s normal Christianity! We’re so sub-normal, if we ever became normal, they (the world) will think we’re abnormal.”

“We speak thousands of words every day and all these words are accumulated: the good words, the bad words, the criticized words… we’re so flippant with our words; we’re so easy with our criticism. We stab and we injure and we hurt, and God is going to try all my words before a thousand-million people. Every word you say is going to be played back some day. The Word of God says man shall give an account for every word that he has spoken.”

“I read through Hebrews 11. These staggering men and women through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtain the promises, stopped the lions; women received their dead raised to life again. All the devilish things (they endured) and not one ever had a Bible! Well, in God’s Name, (what) are you and I going to do when we stand before Him?! When I get there, I’ll have to face up to having the whole revelation of God. Finney didn’t have a bigger Bible; Wesley didn’t have a bigger Bible, but somehow they got nearer to the heart of God. They got a revelation from God, they got convictions of the Spirit and they laid their lives on the line.”

“The surest thing in the world is not death and taxes, it’s death and eternity. Yet, we’re so unconcerned.”

“Most people are bothered by those passages, which they cannot understand; the Scripture which troubles me the most is the Scripture I do understand.”

“I think one of the serious breakdowns in modern evangelism is this: it has offered too much for too little. What we do mostly is offer forgiveness. We need cleansing! There is no true conversion until a man takes up his cross.”

“Do you know what’s wrong with modern preaching? It’s missing three things: one, it has no intensity; two, it has no majesty; three, it has no eternity.”

“There are two kinds of people in the world– only two kinds. Not black or white, rich or poor, but those either dead in sin or dead to sin.”

I still believe in the majesty of that eternal court. Oh the awesomeness of it… God will say to some, “Come ye blessed!” and (to) the rest, “Depart from Me !” I don’t want to stand at the Judgment Seat of Christ and God say to me, “I left you a book of blank checks signed in the blood of Jesus and you didn’t use half of them!”

“Jesus did not come into the world to make bad men good. He came into the world to make dead men live!”

This moment can be a turning point in your life if you not only come to the cross, but get on it! Get rid of your pettiness and your jealousy! Get rid of your erratic living that you get when you come to a conference and you’re down in a valley (the) next week! That shouldn’t happen if Christ is indwelling in me. He’s the same yesterday, today, and forever! He keeps me in peace; He keeps me in joy; He keeps me in power.”

You don’t worship God standing up; you worship God on your belly. Worship is speechIess adoration!”

Copyright © 2011 by Susan E. Johnson
All rights reserved

The Now And The Not Yet

Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” whenever you turn to the right hand or whenever you turn to the left.”  Isaiah 30:12 (NKJV)

Answer From The Lord

Sometimes I ask the question, “My Lord, is this your will?”
It’s then I hear You answer me, “My precious child… be still.”

Sometimes I feel frustrated, because I think I know what’s best.
It is then I hear You say to me, “My busy child… just rest.”

Sometimes I feel so lonely and think I’d like a mate.
Your still small voice gets oh so clear, “My child, please wait.”

“I know the plans I have for you, the wondrous things you’ll see.
If you can just be patient child, and put your trust in Me.”

“I’ve plans to draw you closer, I’ve plans to help you grow.
There’s much I do you cannot see, and much you do not know.”

“But know this, CHILD…I LOVE YOU. You are precious unto Me.
Before I formed you in the womb, I planned your destiny.”

“I’ve something very special that I hope for you to learn.
The gifts I wish to give to you, are gifts you cannot earn.”

“They come without a price tag, but not without a cost.
At Calvary I gave my Son, so you would not be lost.”

“Rest child, and do not weary of doing what is good.
I promise I’ll come back for you, just like I said I would.”

“Your name is written on My palm, I never could forget.
Therefore, do not be discouraged when my answer is: ‘NOT YET’.”

“Praise the Lord. How good it is to sing praises to our God; how pleasant and fitting to praise Him.”   Psalm 147:1 (NIV)

Author Unknown

Edited by Susan E. Johnson

Copyright © 2011 by Susan E. Johnson
All rights reserved

Bits Of Matthew Henry

Matthew Henry, known for his verse by verse commentaries of both the Old and New Testaments, is a treasure trove of spiritual wisdom. Below are just a few of these “pearls”:

“Eve was not taken out of Adam’s head to top him, neither out of  his feet to be trampled on by him, but out of his side to be equal with him, under his arm to be protected by him, and near his heart to be loved by him.”

“Extraordinary afflictions are not always the punishment of extraordinary sins, but sometimes the trial of extraordinary graces. Sanctified afflictions are spiritual promotions.”

“To be religious, is to cast all our cares upon God, and to commit all our ways and works to him, with an assurance that He will care for us. And is this not pleasant? It is a very sensible pleasure to be eased of some pressing burden which we are ready to sink under; and care is such a burden it is a heaviness in the heart of man which maketh it to stoop. Now true religion enables us to ‘acknowledge God in all our ways’ (Proverbs 3:6) and then depend upon him to direct our steps, and follow his directions, not ‘leaning to our own understanding’. It is to refer ourselves, and the disposal of everything that concerns us in this world, to God, and to his will and wisdom, with an entire acquiescence in His award and arbitration: ‘Here I am, let the Lord do with me as seemeth good in His eyes’ (2 Samuel 15:26).”

“To be truly godly, is to have our wills melted into the will of God in everything, and to say amen to it, not only as a prayer, but as a covenant; ‘Father in heaven, thy will be done’; ‘not as I will, but as Thou wilt’. It is to be fully reconciled to all the disposals of the divine providence, and all the methods of divine grace, both concerning others and ourselves; to be satisfied that all is well that God doth, and that it will appear so at last, when the mystery of God shall be finished. And how doth the mind enjoy itself that is come to this! How easy is it! It is not only freed from racking anxieties, but filled with pleasing prospects: fears are hereby silenced, and hopes kept up and elevated. Nothing can come amiss to those who have thus been taught by the principles of their religion to make the best of that which is, because it is the will of God; which is making a virtue of necessity.”

“It is common for those that are farthest from God, to boast themselves most of their being near to the Church.”

“Whatever we have of this world in our hands, our care must be to keep it out of our hearts, lest it come between us and Christ.”

“Cast not away your confidence because God defers his performances. That which does not come in your time, will be hastened in His time, which is always the more convenient season. God will work when He pleases, how He pleases, and by what means He pleases. He is not bound to keep our time, but He will perform His word, honour our faith, and reward them that diligently seek Him.”

“Grace is the free, undeserved goodness and favor of God to mankind.”

“All the grace contained in [the Bible] is owing to Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior; and, unless we consent to Him as our Lord, we cannot expect any benefit by Him as our Savior.”

“The devil visits idle men with his temptations. God visits industrious men with His favors.”

“God has wisely kept us in the dark concerning future events and reserved for himself the knowledge of them, that He may train us up in a dependence upon Himself and a continued readiness for every event.”

“Some people do not like to hear much of repentance; but I think it is so necessary that if I should die in the pulpit, I would desire to die preaching repentance, and if out of the pulpit I would desire to die practicing it.”

“You are all sinners, and guilty before God; conceived in iniquity, born in sin, you are by nature children of disobedience, and children of wrath; whether you have ever thought of it or not, certainly it is so; the Scripture has concluded you all under sin, and consequently under a sentence of death, like that of a physician upon his patient, when he pronounces his disease mortal; nay, like that of a judge upon the prisoner, when he pronounces his crime capital, so that both ways your danger is imminent and extreme. And shall not the consideration of this prevail to make you sober? Were your bodies under some threatening disease, which, in all probability, would in a little time cut off the thread of your life, I believe that would make you serious – that would make you solemn; were you condemned to die shortly by the hand of justice, that would sober you; and is not the death and ruin of an immortal soul more to be dreaded than that of a mortal body? And should not the danger of that give a louder alarm to the most secure, and cast a greater damp up on the most jovial, than of the other? And when you are told, that though the disease is mortal, it is not incurable; though the crime is capital, it is not unpardonable; how should that yet further prevail to make you serious – to make you very solicitous, very industrious to get the disease healed, and the crime forgiven?  Your case will not allow any of your time or thoughts to run waste, or to be trifled away, but you have need by sober mindedness to employ both in a due attendance to the things that belong to your everlasting peace.”

Original Content: Copyright © 2011 by Susan E. Johnson
All rights reserved