Saturday, March 28, 2015

Another who has been there before you

I got a few hours off work yesterday to go to a breakfast conference called Getting to Grips with Mental Illness at Church (I actually thought it was 'getting a grip on' or 'coming to grips with', but that is beside the point) at which Andrew Cameron spoke more theologically and biblically and a friend from church who is doing her PhD on youth mental health spoke more technically and personally. It was a good morning. In the course of the morning Andrew Cameron shared a quote from Charles Spurgeon, directed at people who might be in the midst of some kind of despondency, which I thought was very encouraging, so here it is:
... hardly a spot of light in it ... it may be there is some poor heart here that is very heavy. You cannot proclaim of this great crowd how many sorrowing and burdened spirits there may be among us, but there may be a dozen or two of persons who are driven almost to despair. My dear Friend, if this is your case, I want you to know that somebody else has been just where you are. Remember how the shipwrecked man upon the lonely island all of a sudden came upon the footprints of another human being? So here, on the lone island of despondency, you shall be able to trace the footprints of another who has been there before you.
Spurgeon, Sermon #2433

Isn't that lovely? For the times when I have felt misunderstood or betrayed or ostracised, it is a comfort to know that Christ has gone there before and knows all about it (and also extends grace and forgiveness for anything I might have done to lead me there).

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