Monday, November 10, 2008

Closer to You, Lord

Proverbs 3:11-12

Early in his life, John Donne, one of England's great poets, was known for his controversial poetry and satarical criticism of religious denominations. However, Donne did not remain antagonistic toward God.
After joining the Church of England and marrying Ann Moore, Donne experienced immense suffering. He and Anne lost five of their 12 children and lived in despondent poverty. Donne continually struggled with depression and physical affliction. One would think that the suffering would have driven Donne farther from God.
However, the exact opposite is true. During this time, Donne studied God's ways with fervor. Donne wrote: "Batter my heart, three person'd God; for you/ As yet but knock, breathe, shine and seek to mend.../Take me to you, imprison me, for I / Except you enthrall me, never shall be free."
Donne understood that all his trials brought him closer to God. As Proverbs 3:12 says, "Whom the Lord loves He corrects, just as a father the son in whom he delights."
If you are suffering greatly, do not think that God has abandoned you. Rather, like Donne, God is making your life into a sweet sonnet. Donne was not only one of England's great poets, but also one of its greatest preachers. God is making something phenomenal of your life too. As W.L. Watkinson wrote, "The rarest souls have been tested with high pressures and temperatures, but Heaven will not desert them."

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