I just finished book five of Piper’s “The Swans are not Silent” series. I read the previous four books and was greatly encouraged by each one. This particular volume edified me by reminding me that my light and momentary troubles are just that–light and momentary (2 Cor. 4:17)! Compared with the glory that awaits, and compared with the sufferings endured by servants like Tyndale, Judson and Paton, I really do have it easy. God is always kind. He was kind to these three faithful men of God, and He is kind to me as I face my own trials in this life of ministry. Last night Celena and I were at Mc’D’s reviewing the words for her vocabulary test on Friday. The words persevere and resolute were on that list. During this season of my life, I want to persevere, trusting God and believing the promises given in His Word. I want to be resolute, unwavering in my faith even when the cost is great. If you are a Christian, I know that those are your desires as well.
Here’s Piper’s conclusion:
Therefore, we may receive Adoniram Judson’s final counsel with peace. After observing that “a large portion of those who come out on a mission to the East die within five years,” he says, “Walk softly, therefore; death is narrowly watching your steps.” Indeed, death is watching our steps. We are as fragile as a flower that fades. Let there be no triumphalistic swagger. No cocky self-assurance. Let us accept humbly that we are “a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes” (James 4:14). And let us resolve to set our faces like flint on the path of obedience and never turn back. And with a full grasp of the possible cost before us, and with full courage because of Christ, let us walk softly to every unreached people that remains” (p.118).
Good stuff! Great book! In my quest to read for love (love of God and love of others), I rejoice in my January selection! Have you read anything particularly good yet this year?