Oswald Chamber's wonderful devotional My Utmost for His Highest contains some of the best advice for Christians I have ever read. The most read Christian devotional besides the Bible itself, Chambers' book (published in 1927 in England and in 1935 in the US) consists of his preachings to students and soldiers. Often what he writes seems almost harsh, but the pilgrim pathway worn over the centuries by the saints is far from an easy road. At times it is incredibly difficult and seems downright impossible. And that's when the grace of God fills us with the ability to take the next step, even if we have to do so on our hands and knees, crawling forward toward the goal that is ours in Christ Jesus our Saviour.
In the devotionals for mid-February, dear old Oswald doesn not mince words. They are not the words we want to hear; they are the words we need to hear. Here are a few excerpts from the meditations for February 14 and 15 from My Utmost for His Highest:
At times God puts us through the discipline of darkness to teach us to heed him. Song birds are taught to sing in the dark, and we are put into the shadow of God's hand until we learn to hear Him.... When you are there keep your mouth shut."Every Christian who desires to mature in the faith needs a copy of Chamber's devotional. Whether we like ir or not, he shakes us out of our complacency and into seeking Christ in every word we speak, in every thought we consider, in every action we complete. I have never said this about any book but the Holy Scriptures, but I state it now. If you don't have it, get it. If you have it, read it. When you read it, chew on it and strive to obey it with the assistance of the Holy Spirit: it's that simple and that difficult.
"...[D]arkness is the time to listen.... When you are in the dark, listen, and God will give you a very precious message for someone else when you get into the light."
"Am I willing to be broken bread and poured-out wine for Him?"
Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest,
February 14, 15