Carnal reasoning will tell you that God does not see or govern, but has left the earth.  But, as we go into the presence of God, we learn that all things are beautiful in their time (Ecclesiastes 3.11).  All of God’s ways are merciful and true, though we might feel much forsaken, at the present.  The Holy Spirit teaches us to see that God is our best friend and that He will never forsake us.  God fills the whole earth and heaven with His presence.  He is always present in power and providence by His Spirit supporting, comforting, and strengthening the hearts of His children.  God, alone, can fill every corner of the soul of man.  God is a fountain that will never run dry.  If it is good to be near God, then the nearer we are to Him makes it even better.  Man must not neglect God for any reason, and it is good to lose all to God.  Why?  Because we have riches in Him, liberty in Him, and all in Him.  A man may be a king on earth, and yet a prisoner in himself.  If we lose anything, even our own life for God, we shall save it.  Taste and see how good God is (Psalm 34.8)!  How excellent is Your lovingkindness, which you have laid up for those who fear You (Psalm 36.7)!  “How precious to me are Your thoughts, O God” (Psalm 139.17)!  Labor to be near to Him.  God is near to all who call upon Him.  There is not a minute of time in all of our lives but we must either be near to God or we will be undone.  We must grow in our understanding and fill our thoughts with Him.  The soul grows in the Spirit and finds sweet communion.  Our affections mount up in prayer as in a fiery chariot to hear Him speak to us, seeking comfort in our distresses.  Draw near to Him in praise.  This is the daily work of the angels and saints in heaven.  Let us lift up our hearts with joy inexpressible (1 Peter 1.8). – Richard Sibbes (1577-1635), from Works 7.67-78.

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