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The love that accepts my service binds my heart to itself, for when we serve from love, our love is always increased, as a mother's love for her child.
Service embraces the assembly and its prosperity; a great circle of interest, as the faithful wife devoted to the interests of her lord in his absence, beginning with “endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” up to the highest point, “until we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of the Christ," reaching out to every detail which would subserve to this great end; and finally, “strong in the Lord and in the power of his might,” resisting every force of the enemy to turn us aside from making known "the mystery of the gospel.'
To the heart in true service, only one thing remains, and that is to see Him. The heart will be fully satisfied when we see Him. The one loving Him best, and serving Him best, the bride in character, has but one leading desire, even to see Him; and hence in company with the Spirit, says to Him, “Come!'' while still unwearied in service. Surely it is only the heart that lives on His love that can know the way love to Him is deepened and increased, as the sense of His coming is a felt reality to it. Surely the wise virgins trimmed their lamps to go out to meet Him. The nearer He is, the more the heart longs to see Him. He promotes love in our hearts by leading us into the consciousness of His being near. Thus proximity to Him produces suitability; as with Rebekah, when she caught sight of Isaac, she became in appearance suited for him, “She took a veil, and covered herself.”
Thus feebly have I set forth some of the great effects which spring from a knowledge of union with Christ. The subject delights one, but it is too much like music at a distance. One catches a little of it, but the nearer you come to it, the more you are entranced by it.
May we draw nearer and nearer until we are not only filled with the melody, but our hearts wholly captivated by His love.
FRAGMENT. WHEN Christ comes to fetch His people, His power will be put forth. They cannot step into the cloud save by His power. Many do not disallow things of the flesh which they ought to disallow. They get happy in the thought of the Lord's coming, and then something inconsistent with it hinders joy. You may judge everything in self that is inconsistent, but even then you will feel that you must be dependent on Christ to light up the hope in the heart, and to keep it burning brightly. There must be the crippling of all self-confidence.
The Lord gave a promise, that He will fulfil. “I will come again, and receive you unto myself.” He has not forgotten it. All in connection with it has got its measure from Christ having laid down His life and having taken it again. He goes up to heaven, and
says, “I go to prepare a place in my Father's house. I will come again and fetch you.” He had got a place of His own, and these adopted ones are to be in it with Him. Directly the Son is at home, He must have a place prepared for us to be with Him there. If I think of heaven only, my ideas about it are vague ; but when I think of Him in heaven, it makes a home for my heart in a place where all His glory can flow forth--where the Father's will is ever
being done. When we look up now, we know He is there, and quite at home. He left heaven to die for His people ; He will leave heaven again, to come and fetch His people up there. When we see Him, we shall feel that all that we have learnt about Him is a very feeble expression of His beauty. We shall see Him as the centre of all the glory of heaven, but the beauty of Himself will surpass all.
G. V. W.
London Gospel Tract Depot, 20, Paternoster Square.