Wisdom From Vance Havner 2
My father considered himself to be the head of the family, and the rest of us were inclined to agree with him. He was not opposed to the posterior application of superior force, if necessary. He was not afraid he would frustrate Junior. He saw no conflict between love and discipline. Neither does the Bible. Our Lord said, As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. (Revelation 3:19)
It is well to grow mellow with the passing of the years, but we must also remember that some things become mellow just before they spoil!
Sometimes religious services are announced As usual. Maybe that*s what*s wrong with them! Nothing else is as usual these days. We are living ordinary lives in extraordinary times. The emergency requires urgency. We are passing resolutions when we should be promoting revolutions . . . the Acts of the Apostles kind.
There were multitudes of converts in the Acts but they were the results and not the goals. On the day of Pentecost, the Apostles did not say, Let*s shoot for five thousand next time. They witnessed in the power of the Spirit and the thousands came. If we had what they had, we would exceed all our goals.
When I was a country pastor, I kept hearing about a former shepherd of my flock, Josiah Elliott, who preached there back in the horse-and-buggy days. What a grip that man had on the hearts of the people! I became very anxious to know something of the source of his mighty influence. Other pastors of greater scholarly and social attainments had followed him, but I heard most about Josiah Elliott. One day I went back on the creek where my farmer friend, John Brown, was plowing, and asked him where lay the secret of the old preacher*s power. John reflected for a moment, as he was wont to do, and then remarked simply; He just loved us.
I was due to begin preaching in LaSalle, Illinois on a Monday night. Some said I couldn*t make it on wartime train schedules. On Monday morning, I noticed that the seat opposite mine was occupied by a prominent government official. He was on his way to speak in Chicago. Pressure was brought to bear on his behalf and the train went through on time. I thought about him: You may think we are making this schedule because you are to speak in Chicago, but, really, the good Lord is just getting this little preacher to LaSalle to begin his revival on time! That was one time I had the government working for me! It may seem that man*s plans are given the main line today, but God is seeing His own program through. The best thing we can do is to find out which way God is going and get ourselves going in that direction.
I have been blessed by the story of a converted drunkard who was asked Do you believe that Jesus changed water into wine? Yes, he replied, I have seen Him change whiskey into groceries and gambling tickets into furniture and a broken-hearted wife into a radiant Christian. I have no difficulty believing He changed water into wine!
A soldier was trying to keep warm in his army tent on a frigid winter night. He had piled his clothes and blankets on top of him but his feet stuck out beyond the covers. Why don*t you pull in your feet? the Sergeant asked. Oh, no, the chattering rookie replied, If I*d pull them cold things in here, I would freeze to death! The church must be warm at heart if we are to thaw out our fringe members.
God*s work must be done by God*s people and by God*s power. It is not enough to select a lawyer to teach a Bible class just because he is a good talker. Unless he is Spirit-filled, he is unqualified. A banker is not competent to handle church finances merely because he handles money all week. A soloist in the choir needs more than a diploma from a conservatory. She may sing so high that a soprano could sing bass to it, but if she is not endued by the Spirit, she cannot sing to the glory of God.
The Israelites got tired of fighting and tried peaceful coexistence with the Canaanites. It didn*t work. There is no peaceful coexistence with evil. Communism is a moral cancer, and you cannot peacefully coexist with cancer. If you don*t get the cancer, the cancer will get you.
If you enjoy the wisdom of Vance Havner you might find some of his short but powerful books online, in a Christian bookstore or from Baker Book House, 2768 E Paris Ave SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49546 (616) 957-3110 or copy and paste this in your URL: bakerpublishinggroup.com.
These are some of the titles:
By The Still Waters
Care to discuss Wisdom From Vance Havner 2 with Ron?