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Daily Bread

Down but not out

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The peace of God . . . will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:7

The 18th-century author Samuel Johnson was noted for his wit, sensitivity, and encyclopedic knowledge. He found solitude depressing, so he often took in the poor and homeless so that he could be surrounded by people. He also confessed that he had a deep fear of dying.

An Encyclopedia Britannica article, however, speaks of Johnson’s ‘zest for living.” It characterizes him as a “Christian moralist” with a strong conviction of the reality of sin and of the redemption provided through faith in Jesus Christ. It also says that “his faith prevailed,” for when he knew he was dying “he refused to take opiates because he had prayed that he might render his soul to God unclouded.” The article concludes: “Few men have left finer examples of the art of living than Samuel Johnson.”

I have known many believers with a disposition like that. Most of them went through repeated cycles of joy and gloom. And when they were down, merely quoting Bible verses helped little because they were already aware of them. But they kept living for God and praying, and their faith prevailed. The “peace of God” filled their hearts (Phil. 4:7). That’s good news for all of us, especially for those who go through times of doubt and despair. — Herb Vander Lugt

 

Whenever darkness grips your soul

And you are tempted to despair,

Remember Christ’s unfailing love,

And trust His faithful, tender care.     — Sper

 

READ: Psalm 88

When life is filled with shadows, face the sunshine of God’s love.

The Bible in one year:

• Genesis 41-46

CHRIST JESUS

ENCYCLOPEDIA BRITANNICA

GOD

HERB VANDER LUGT

JESUS CHRIST

REMEMBER CHRIST

SAMUEL JOHNSON

SPER

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