Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Begin at once...

Begin at once; before you venture away from this quiet moment, ask your King to take you wholly into His service, and place all the hours of this day quite simply at His disposal, and ask him to make and keep you ready to do just exactly what He appoints. Never mind about tomorrow; one day at a time is enough. Try it today, and see if it is not a day of strange, almost curious peace, so sweet that you will be only too thankful when tomorrow comes to ask Him to take it also. ...Francis Ridley Havergal image by David DeHetre

Monday, April 25, 2011

Our Lord has written the promise of the resurrection...

Our Lord has written the promise of the resurrection, not in books alone but in every leaf in springtime. ...Martin Luther
 image by Jannes Pockele

John Updike: 7 Stanzas at Easter

Make no mistake: if He rose at all
it was as His body;
if the cells’ dissolution did not reverse, the molecules
reknit, the amino acids rekindle,
the Church will fall.

It was not as the flowers,
each soft Spring recurrent;
it was not as His Spirit in the mouths and fuddled
eyes of the eleven apostles;
it was as His flesh: ours.

The same hinged thumbs and toes,
the same valved heart
that–pierced–died, withered, paused, and then
regathered out of enduring Might
new strength to enclose.

Let us not mock God with metaphor,
analogy, sidestepping, transcendence;
making of the event a parable, a sign painted in the
faded credulity of earlier ages:
let us walk through the door.

The stone is rolled back, not papier-mâché,
not a stone in a story,
but the vast rock of materiality that in the slow
grinding of time will eclipse for each of us
the wide light of day.

And if we will have an angel at the tomb,
make it a real angel,
weighty with Max Planck’s quanta, vivid with hair,
opaque in the dawn light, robed in real linen
spun on a definite loom.

Let us not seek to make it less monstrous,
for our own convenience, our own sense of beauty,
lest, awakened in one unthinkable hour, we are
embarrassed by the miracle,
and crushed by remonstrance.
...John Updike image

Christ the Lord is Risen Today

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Faith in the resurrection of Jesus...

Faith in the resurrection of Jesus says that there is a future for every human being; the cry for unending life which is a part of the person is indeed answered. Through Jesus we do know ‘the room where exiled love lays down its victory.’ He himself is this place, and he calls us to be with him in dependence on him. He calls us to keep this place open within the world so that he, the exiled love, may reappear over and over in the world... God exists: that is the real message of Easter. Anyone who even begins to grasp what this means also knows what it means to be redeemed. ...Benedict XVI image

"Come, see the place where the Lord lay"

"Come, see the place where the Lord lay," with joy and gladness. He does not lie there now. Weep, when ye see the tomb of Christ, but rejoice because it is empty. Thy sin slew him, but his divinity raised him up. Thy guilt hath murdered him, but his righteousness hath restored him. Oh! he hath burst the bonds of death, he hath ungirt the cerements of the tomb, and hath come out more than conqueror, crushing death beneath his feet. Rejoice, O Christian, for he is not there—he is risen. ...CH Spurgeon image

Saturday, April 23, 2011

O Lord, God of my salvation...

43019038 FRD - John 19 38 - Joseph of Arimathaea prepares Christ for burial.jpg
O Lord, God of my salvation;
I cry out day and night before you.

Let my prayer come before you;
incline your ear to my cry!

For my soul is full of troubles,
and my life draws near to Sheol.
I am counted among those who go down to the pit;
I am a man who has no strength,
like one set loose among the dead,
like the slain that lie in the grave,
like those whom you remember no more,
for they are cut off from your hand.
You have put me in the depths of the pit,
in the regions dark and deep.
Your wrath lies heavy upon me,
and you overwhelm me with all your waves.

 You have caused my companions to shun me;
you have made me a horror to them.
I am shut in so that I cannot escape;
my eye grows dim through sorrow.
Every day I call upon you, O Lord;
I spread out my hands to you.
Do you work wonders for the dead?
Do the departed rise up to praise you?

Is your steadfast love declared in the grave,
or your faithfulness in Abaddon?
Are your wonders known in the darkness,
or your righteousness in the land of forgetfulness?

 But I, O Lord, cry to you;
in the morning my prayer comes before you.
O Lord, why do you cast my soul away?
Why do you hide your face from me?
Afflicted and close to death from my youth up,
I suffer your terrors; I am helpless.
Your wrath has swept over me;
your dreadful assaults destroy me.
They surround me like a flood all day long;
they close in on me together.
You have caused my beloved and my friend to shun me;
my companions have become darkness.
...Psalm 88  image

Holy Saturday

Come, let us see our Life lying in the tomb, that He may give life to those that in their tombs lie dead. Come, let us look today on the Son of Judah as He sleeps, and with the prophet let us cry aloud to Him: Thou hast lain down, Thou hast slept as a lion; who shall awaken Thee, O King? But of Thine own free will do Thou rise up, who willingly dost give Thyself for us. O Lord, glory to Thee.

Today a tomb holds Him who holds the creation in the hollow of His hand; a stone covers Him who covered the heavens with glory. Life sleeps and hell trembles, and Adam is set free from his bonds. Glory to Thy dispensation, whereby Thou hast accomplished all things, granting us an eternal Sabbath, Thy most holy Resurrection from the dead.
(Hymns of the Ainoi) icon

Friday, April 22, 2011

Is it a small thing in your eyes to be loved by God...

Is it a small thing in your eyes to be loved by God-to be the son, the spouse, the love, the delight of the King of glory? Christian, believe this, and think about it: you will be eternally embraced in the arms of the love which was from everlasting, and will extend to everlasting - of the love which brought the Son of God's love from heaven to earth, from earth to the cross, from the cross to the grave, from the grave to glory - that love which was weary, hungry, tempted, scorned, scourged, buffeted, spat upon, crucified, pierced - which fasted, prayed, taught, healed, wept, sweated, bled, died. That love will eternally embrace you. ...Richard Baxter image

The 15 Antiphon of Holy Friday

(Sung by Vassilis Hadjinicolaou)

Today He who hung the earth upon the waters
is hung on the tree,
The King of the angels is decked with a crown of thorns.
He who wraps the heavens in clouds is wrapped
 in the purple of mockery.
He who freed Adam in the Jordan is slapped on the face.
The Bridegroom of the Church is affixed to the Cross with nails.
The Son of the virgin is pierced by a spear.

We worship Thy passion, O Christ.
We worship Thy passion, O Christ.
We worship Thy passion, O Christ.

Show us also Thy glorious resurrection.

Faithful Cross! Above all other...

Faithful Cross! Above all other,
One and only noble Tree!
None in foliage, none in blossom,
None in fruit thy peers may be;
Sweetest wood and sweetest iron!
Sweetest Weight is hung on thee!

Lofty tree, bend down thy branches,
To embrace thy sacred load;
Oh, relax the native tension
Of that all too rigid wood;
Gently, gently bear the members
Of thy dying King and God.

Tree, which solely wast found worthy
This world's Victim to sustain;
Harbour from the raging tempest!
Ark, that saved the world again!
Tree, with sacred blood anointed
Of the Lamb for sinners slain.

Blessing, honour, everlasting,
To the immortal Deity;
To the Father, Son, and Spirit,
Equal praises ever be;
Glory through the earth and heaven
To Trinity in Unity. Amen. Venantius Fortunatus, image

Wonder of wonders! On the cross He dies!

Wonder of wonders!  On the cross He dies!
Man of the ages, David's mighty Son,
The Eternal Word who spake and it was done,
What time, of old, He formed the earth and skies.

Abashed be all the wisdom of the wise!
Let the wide earth through all her kingdoms know
The promise of the Lamb of God, whose blood should flow-
For human guilt the grand, sole sacrifice.

No more need altar smoke, nor victim bleed:
'Tis finished! the great mystery of love.
Ye sin condemned, by this blood, 'tis decreed.
Ye stand absolved; behold the curse removed!
O Christ! Thy deadly wounds, Thy mortal strife
Crush death and hell and give immortal life.

'Tis finished all: the veil is rent,
The welcome sure, the access free:
Now then we leave our banishment,
O Father, to return to Thee!
...Horatius Bonar image

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Holy Thursday: So great and wonderful was the work...

"The Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many" Matthew 20:28

So great and wonderful was the work that Jesus had to do for the sinner, that nothing less was necessary than that he should give Himself to do that work. So great and wonderful was the love of Jesus towards us, that He actually gave Himself for us and to us. So great and wonderful is the surrender of Jesus, that all that same thing for which He gave Himself can actually and completely come to pass in us. For Jesus, the Holy, the Almighty, has taken it upon Himself to do it: He gave Himself for us. . . .And now the one thing that is necessary is that we should rightly understand and firmly believe this His surrender for us. . . .

When I receive Him, when I believe that He gave Himself to do this for me, I shall certainly experience it. I shall be purified through Him, shall be held fast as His possession, and be filled with zeal and joy to work for Him. ...Andrew Murray image

Full Meditation

Holy Thursday: And when they had sung a hymn...

And when they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives. Mark 14:26

How fitting that on this very night Christ, the coming King, would give voice to songs penned centuries earlier just for Him....Imagine the Son of God singing these words as the seconds ticked toward the cross...."The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?...The stone the builders rejected has become the capstone; The Lord has done this and it is marvelous in our eyes."

Whatever Christ sang as the Passover meal concluded that night, the words had significance for Him that the others could never have comprehended. I wonder if His voice quivered with emotion. Or did He sing with exultation? Perhaps He did both, just as you and I have done at terribly bittersweet moments when our faith exults while our sight weeps. One thing we know: Christ, above all others, knew that He was singing more than words. That night He sang the score of His destiny. ...Beth Moore

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

It is not for us now to rush ahead to Easter...

It is not for us now to rush ahead to Easter. Rather, it is necessary for us once again to undertake the surrender to Jesus of all of our false expectations and selfish hopes. It is necessary for us to watch as our sin burdens him and bears down on his head like a crown of thorns. It is necessary for us to see him die as the Lamb of God who absorbs the sin of the world and bears it away. It is necessary for us to suffer patiently the dark night of sorrow and death, if we are to enter the brilliant new light of Easter and receive the eternal life offered to us in the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. ...Anonymous image by Randy OHC

For to this you have been called...

For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps. He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth. When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly. He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed. 1 Peter 2:21-24 image

Monday, April 18, 2011

Who is it that is your Shepherd? The Lord!

Who is it that is your Shepherd? The Lord! Oh, my friends, what a wonderful announcement! The Lord God of heaven and earth, and Almighty Creator of all things, He who holds the universe in His hand as though it were a very little thing. He is your Shepherd, and has charged Himself with the care and keeping of His sheep. If your hearts could really take in this thought you would never have a fear or a care again; for with such a Shepherd how could it be possible for you to ever to want any good thing? ...Hannah Whitall Smith image

The Savior knew that men would be unkind to him...

The Savior knew that men would be unkind to him, he knew it all beforehand, and when men were ungrateful he did not merely hear their words, but he read their hearts, and he knew that their hearts were yet more opposed to him, yet he never turned aside from his course of love, he pressed on still through reproaches and shame and derision and every form of human evil till he had finished the redemption of his people. Admire his love and let it kindle in you love in return. ...CH Spurgeon image by Steve Snodgrass


Eternal Lord, how faint and small...

Eternal Lord, how faint and small
Our greatest, strongest thoughts must seem
To Thee, who overseest all,
And leads us through Life's shallow stream.

How tangled are our straightest ways;
How dimly flares our brightest star;
How earthbound is our highest praise
To Thee, who sees us as we are.

Our feet are slow where Thine are fast;
Thy kiss of grace meets lips of stone;
And we admit Thy love at last
To hearts that have none of their own.
...Robert MacColl Adams image

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
Hark! all the tribes Hosanna cry;
O Savior meek, pursue Thy road
With palms and scattered garments strowed.

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
In lowly pomp ride on to die!
O Christ! Thy triumph now begin
Over captive death and conquered sin.

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
The wingèd squadrons of the sky
Look down with sad and wondering eyes
To see the approaching sacrifice.

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
Thy last and fiercest strife is nigh;
The Father, on His sapphire throne,
Expects His own anointed Son.

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
In lowly pomp ride on to die;
Bow Thy meek head to mortal pain,
Then take, O God, Thy power, and reign.
......Henry Hart Milman image

The only way you can be delivered...

The only way you can be delivered from that sin is to have your false expectations destroyed, once and for all. And that is precisely what happened between Palm Sunday and Good Friday. Jesus drew the false, sinful expectations of the world unto himself, absorbed them, and bore them on the cross. His death was the death of all of our false expectations, and therefore his death was the death of sin itself. The false piety of Palm Sunday is crucified on Good Friday and buried that night, in order that true faith in God might be created on Easter through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. ...Edwin Peterman image

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Thou art the Lord who slept upon the pillow...

Thou art the Lord who slept upon the pillow;
Thou art the Lord who soothed the furious sea.
What matter beating wind and tossing billow
If only we are in the boat with Thee?

Hold us in quiet through the age-long minute
While Thou art silent, and the wind is shrill:
Can the boat sink while Thou, dear Lord, art in it?
Can the heart faint that waiteth on Thy will?
...Amy Carmichael image

How Do You Frighten Someone Raised from the Dead?

Ravi Zacharias

In Christ, troubles are turned into triumph...

In Christ, troubles are turned into triumph, so in Him we look at what is coming as the times of the greatest triumphs the world has ever known! The conclusion of all things is that we win! The cross will prevail. This is the foundational truth that all of our understanding of these times must be based on. There will be no retreat in those who walk in the true light. When you open your shades at night, darkness does not come in and flood the room. Rather the light shines out into the darkness because light is stronger than darkness. The darker it becomes, the brighter our light will be. Where sin abounds, grace will that much more abound. ...Rick Joyner image by Anthony Easton

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

The valley of the shadow of death...

041408 copy
The valley of the shadow of death holds no darkness for the child of God. There must be light, else there could be no shadow. Jesus is the light. He has overcome death.
...Dwight L. Moody image

Monday, April 11, 2011


Do not let your faults discourage you. Be patient with yourself as well as with your neighbor. Thinking too much will exhaust you and cause you to make a lot of mistakes. Learn to pray in all your daily situations. Speak, act, and walk as if you were in prayer. This is how you should live anyway.

Do everything without becoming too excited. As soon as you start to feel yourself getting too eager, quiet yourself before God. Listen to Him as He prompts you inwardly, then do only as He directs. If you do this, your words will be fewer but more effective. You will be calm, and good will be accomplished in greater measure.

I am not talking about continually trying to reason things out. Simply ask your Lord what He wants of you. This simple and short asking is better than your long-winded inner debates.

Turn toward God and it will be much easier to turn away from your strong natural feelings. Depend on the Lord within you. Your life will eventually become a prayer. You may suffer, but it will be in peace. ...Francois Fenelon image by Leland Francisco

In much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses...

". . . in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses." 2 Corinthians 6:4

It takes Almighty grace to take the next step when there is no vision and no spectator - the next step in devotion, the next step in your study, in your reading, in your kitchen; the next step in your duty, when there is no vision from God, no enthusiasm and no spectator. It takes far more of the grace of God, far more conscious drawing upon God to take that step, than it does to preach the Gospel.

Every Christian has to partake of what was the essence of the Incarnation, he must bring the thing down into flesh and blood actualities and work it out through the finger tips. We flag when there is no vision, no uplift, but just the common round, the trivial task. The thing that tells in the long run for God and for men is the steady persevering work in the unseen, and the only way to keep the life uncrushed is to live looking to God. Ask God to keep the eyes of your spirit open to the Risen Christ, and it will be impossible for drudgery to damp you. Continually get away from pettiness and paltriness of mind and thought out into the thirteenth chapter of St. John's Gospel. ...Oswald Chambers

The death of Christ on the cross...

The death of Christ on the cross was no imitation death or charade. It is presented to us by the Gospel writers because they want us to face death, to confront it - so that we will be prepared for real Life! The Hebrews when they were in Egypt were saved from the angel of death and destruction by marking the door-posts of their houses with the blood of a lamb, so we are marked with the life-giving sign of the cross, stained with the blood of the Lamb of God. The Cross then is the victory sign of every Christian. It is the powerful and defiant banner under which we journey to the safety of our proper homeland, for death has been conquered – and Christ has destroyed its fear through the Cross. ...David Charlesworth image

If we would indeed know God in growing intimacy

If we would indeed know God in growing intimacy, we must go this way of renunciation. And if we are set upon the pursuit of God, He will sooner or later bring us to this test. Abraham's testing was, at the time, not known to him as such, yet if he had taken some course other than the one he did, the whole history of the Old Testament would have been different. God would have found His man, no doubt, but the loss to Abraham would have been tragic beyond the telling. So we will be brought one by one to the testing place, and we may never know when we are there. At that testing place there will be no dozen possible choices for us; just one and an alternative, but our whole future will be conditioned by the choice we make. ...AW Tozer image

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

God does not judge the condition or quality of His church...

God does not judge the condition or quality of His church by how good the meetings are on Sunday morning, but by how good the people are on Monday morning. The main calling of our life is more than just knowing the truth-it is having that truth become our life. ...Rick Joyner
 image by Vic Nanda


I'm giving You my heart
All that is within
I lay it all down
For the sake of You my King
I'm giving You my dreams laying down my rights
I'm giving up my pride
For the promise of new life

And I Surrender
All to You, all to You

I'm singing You this song
I'm waiting at the Cross
All the world holds dear
I count it all as loss
For the sake of knowing You
For the glory of Your name
To know the lasting joy
Even sharing in Your pain
...Marc James

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Song of the Light

Phos Hilaron
(Song of the Light)

O joyful light,
from the pure glory of the eternal heavenly Father,
O holy, blessed Jesus Christ.

As we come to the setting of the sun
and see the evening light,
we give thanks and praise to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit of God.

Worthy are you at all times
to be sung with holy voices,
O Son of God, O giver of life,
and to be glorified through all creation.

We judge of things by their present appearance...

We judge of things by their present appearance, but the Lord sees them in their consequences; if we could do so likewise, we should be perfectly of His mind; but as we cannot, it is an unspeakable mercy that He will manage for us, whether we are pleased with His management or not; and it is spoken of as one of His heaviest judgments, when He gives any person or people up to the way of their own hearts, and to walk after their own counsels. ...John Newton image

Though every sun shall spend its fire...

Though every sun shall spend its fire
And galaxies shall dim to shade,
The Light by whom these lights were made
Shall never flicker, never fade.

In us arise, O Light of lights.
Burn brightly in the caverned heart.
Consume the shade that fear supplies,
And peace and truth instead impart.
...Thomas H. Troeger

God is constant in His love...

God is constant in His love if we will but look to Him; he will sustain us in every storm if we will but cry out to Him; He will save us if we will but reach out our hand to Him. He is there, if we will only turn to Him and learn to trust in Him alone. The upheavals in this world, or in the Church herself, are not the end of everything, especially of His love. They can in fact serve best as signs to remind us of His love and of His constancy, to make us turn once more to Him and cling to Him again when all else that we counted on is overturned around us. ...Fr. Water Ciszek SJ image

Monday, April 4, 2011

There are times when it seems as if God watches to see...

There are times when it seems as if God watches to see if we will give Him the abandoned tokens of how genuinely we do love Him. Abandon to God is of more value than personal holiness. Personal holiness focuses the eye on our own whiteness; we are greatly concerned about the way we walk and talk and look, fearful lest we offend Him. Perfect love casts out all that when once we are abandoned to God. We have to get rid of this notion - "Am I of any use?" and make up our minds that we are not, and we may be near the truth. It is never a question of being of use, but of being of value to God Himself. When we are abandoned to God, He works through us all the time. ...Oswald Chambers image

When our hearts are tenderly responsive...

When our hearts are tenderly responsive --- and it suits His greater plan, then the Lord will lift the thin veil that separates us. And we will be stunned to realize that He has been closer than our own breath all along. ...Patsy Clairmont image

There is a place...

File:Sunset at Varkala Beach Kerala India.jpg
There is a place where thou canst touch the eyes
Of blinded men to instant, perfect sight;
There is a place where thou canst say, “Arise”
To dying captives, bound in chains of night;
There is a place where thou canst reach the store
Of hoarded gold and free it for the Lord;
There is a place–upon some distant shore–
Where thou canst send the worker and the Word.
Where is that secret place–dost thou ask, “Where?”
O soul, it is the secret place of prayer!
...Alfred Lord Tennyson image

Sunday, April 3, 2011

You can deal with an enormous amount of success...

You can deal with an enormous amount of success as well as an enormous amount of failure without losing your identity, because your identity is that you are the beloved. Long before your father and mother, your brothers and sisters, your teachers, your church, or any people touched you in a loving as well as in a wounding way-long before you were rejected by some person or praised by somebody else-that voice has been there always. "I have loved you with an everlasting love." That love is there before you were born and will be there after you die.
...Henri J. M. Nouwen image

God's means of delivering us from sin...

God's means of delivering us from sin is not by making us stronger and stronger, but by making us weaker and weaker. That is surely rather a peculiar way of victory, you say; but it is the divine way. God sets us free from the dominion of sin, not by strengthening our old man but by crucifying him; not by helping him to do anything, but by removing him from the scene of action. ...Watchman Nee image

Total surrender to God must come in small details...

Total surrender to God must come in small details as it comes in big details. It's nothing but that single word, "Yes, I accept whatever you give, and I give whatever you take." And this is just a simple way for us to be holy. We must not create difficulties in our own minds. To be holy doesm't mean to do extaordinary things, to understand big things, but it is a simple acceptance, because I have given myself to God, because I belong to him-my total surrender. He could put me here. He could put me there. He can use me. He cannot use me. It doesn't matter because I belong so totally to him that he can do just what he wants to do with me.

Lent is a time when we relive the passion of Christ. Let it not be just a time when our feelings are roused, but let it be a change that comes through cooperation with God's grace in real sacrifices of self. Sacrifice, to be real, must cost; it must hurt; it must empty us of self. Let us go through the passion of Christ day by day. ...Blessed Teresa of Calcutta

Friday, April 1, 2011

The principles of gain through loss...

The principles of gain through loss, of joy through sorrow, of getting by giving, of fulfillment by laying down, of life out of death is what that Book teaches, and the people who have believed it enough to live it out in simple, humble, day-by-day practice are people who have found the gain, the joy, the getting, the fulfillment, the life. ...Elisabeth Elliot image

"It is I, be not afraid."

The blessed Lord condensed it all into one single message of eternal comfort spoken to the disciples on the Sea of Galilee: "It is I, be not afraid."

He is the antidote to fear; He is the remedy for trouble; He is the substance and the sum of deliverance. We should, therefore, rise above fear. Let us keep our eyes fastened upon Him; let us abide continually in Him; let us be content with Him. Let us cling closely to Him and cry, "Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea". (Psalm 46:2) ...AB Simpson

Why do I not call on His name?

And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shalt be delivered. Joel 2:32

Why do I not call on His name? Why do I run to this neighbor and that when God is so near and will hear my faintest call? Why do I sit down and devise schemes and invent plans! Why not at once roll my self and my burden upon the Lord? Straightforward is the best runner—why do I not run at once to the living God? In vain shall I look for deliverance anywhere else; but with God I shall find it; for here I have His royal "shall" to make it sure.

I need not ask whether I may call on Him or not, for that word whosoever is a very wide and comprehensive one. Whosoever means me, for it means anybody and everybody who calls upon God. I will therefore follow the leading of the text and at once call upon the glorious Lord who had made so large a promise.

My case is urgent, and I do not see how I am to be delivered; but this is no business of mine. He who makes the promise will find out ways and means of keeping it. It is mine to obey His commands; it is not mine to direct His counsels. I am His servant, not His solicitor. I call upon Him, and He will deliver me.

...CH Spurgeon image

Nothing but the anointing of the Holy Spirit...

Earnestness is good and impressive: genius is gifted and great. Thought kindles and inspires, but it takes a diviner endowment, and more powerful energy than earnestness or genius or thought to break the chains of sin, to win estranged and deprived hearts to God, to repair the breaches and restore the Church to her old ways of purity and power. Nothing but the anointing of the Holy Spirit can do this.
 ...EM Bounds image