Dr. F. W. Boreham, a great Australian Christian preacher, tells in his autobiography, of a time when he was a small boy. He and his brothers noticed that their father looked worried and was not his usual cheery self, and that mother’s eyes were red through crying.Then, as if by a miracle, the atmosphere changed. The home was filled with light and confidence. Mum and Dad were as good and as gracious as ever. The change seemed to come from a scrap of paper cut from the corner of a cheap almanac, and it read: “Hitherto hath the Lord helped us.” The tiny scrap of paper seemed to be so important that the boys asked Mum what had happened. She said “Father and I have had a crushing trouble, and we feared a much heavier one. Last Tuesday I was so sick with worry, all I could do was pick up the baby and pace the floor. The burden was heavier than I could bear:it seemed to be killing me. Then I noticed the almanac on the wall, and these words in the corner, and knew they were put there for me. It was as if someone had spoken to me the words “Hitherto hath the Lord helped us”. I was so overcome I sat down and had a good cry, and then began again with fresh heart and trust in God. When Father came home I told him and he cut off the text with his penknife and had it framed and hung there, where you see it now.”
Now Boreham knew that it wasn’t the scrap of paper which had magic properties, “It was then”, he said “that I made my discovery. Here was the secret, here was the connection, between religion and real life …”. As a lad he had seen that God does let us know, even in the hardest times, that he can be trusted. “I have always helped you in the past”.You are not alone. You don’t have to pace the floor shouting “Where are you, God? – why did you let this happen?”. He has helped us before: he will now. “Take heart, you can trust me.”
Whatever your problem today, don’t trudge through the day under its weight: cast your burden on the Lord. Even the psalmist had to learn this lesson, that God doesn’t hide – it is we who need the glasses!
Why O Lord, do you stand far off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble? Psalm 10:1
Point to ponder:
It may be an old Gospel hymn but it shouts to us: “All your anxiety, all your care, bring to the mercy seat, LEAVE it there”.
Sometimes, O Lord, I feel like a motherless child and then I remember that you are both father and mother to me, thank you.
Now read the shortest of the Psalms, 117.