Sunday, October 14, 2007

Leading His Dear Children Along

From "The Pastor's Pen" in the October 2007 Voice of the Valley, the monthly newsletter of Valley Bible Church, by the Reverend Frank C. Emrich. Re-posted here with permission.

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Our first president, George Washington, once stated:
Providence has at all times been my only dependence, for all other resources seem to have failed us.
Wise words. I thought of that quote on my way back from idaho where I spoke to the pastors of the Inland Regional of the Independent Fundamental Churches of America. Both Wendy and I were impressed and impacted by their faithfulness to ministry and the Word as they serve God in some pretty small and obscure places.
It reminded me of a rather obscure nineteenth-century preacher named George A. Young. Young spent most of his life serving God in small towns. As is typical with rural pastors, his financial situation was bleak and his family lived on a sub-standard income. After a while the family was able to scrape enough money together to buy their own small home, which George built himself.
Then disaster struck; when George was away preaching, some ["tolerent"] townspeople who disapproved of his preaching set fire to the little house, burning it to the ground.
Out of that circumstance, George YToung wrote the lyrics to this song:
In shady, green pastures, so rich and so sweet,
God leads His dear children along;
Where the waters cool flow bathes the weary ones feet,
God leads His dear children along.
Some through the waters, some through the flood,
Some through the fire, but all through the Blood;
Some through great sorrow, but God gives a song,
In the night season and all the day long.
The next time you feel discouraged or are suffering through another trial, why not try singing that song, and then meditate on Isaiah 43:2:
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they will not overflow you; when you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, nor will the flame burn you.