Friday, January 31, 2014

  "What wonderful provision God has made for us, spreading out the Bible into types of nature! What if every part of your house should begin to repeat the truths which have been committed to its symbolism? The lowest stone would say, in silence of night, “other foundation can no man lay.” The corner stone would catch the word, “Christ is the corner stone.” The door would add, “I am the door.” The light by your bedside would stream up a moment to tell you, “Christ is the light of the world.” If you gaze upon your children, they reflect from their sweetly sleeping faces the words of Christ, “Except ye become like little children.” If waking, you look towards your parent’s couch, from that sacred place God calls himself your father and mother. Disturbed by the crying of your children, who are affrighted in a dream, you rise to soothe them, and hear God saying, “ So will I wipe away all tears from your eyes in heaven.” Returning to your bed, you look from the window. Every star hails you, but, chiefest, “the bright and morning Star.” By and by flaming from the east, the flood of morning bathes your dwelling, and calls you forth to the cares of the day, and then you remember that God is the sun, and that heaven is bright with his presence. Drawn by hunger, you approach the table. The loaf whispers as you break it, “Broken for you,” and the wheat of the loaf sighs, “Bruised and ground for you.’ The water that quenches your thirst says, “I am the water of life.” If you wash your hands, you can but remember the teachings of spiritual purity. If you wash your feet, that hath been done sacredly by Christ, as a memorial. Go forth to your labor, and what thing can you see that hath not its message? The ground is full of sympathy. The flowers have been printed with teachings. The trees, that only seem to shake their leaves in sport, are framing divine sentences. The birds tell of heaven with their love-warbling’s in the green twilight. The sparrow is a preacher of truth. The hen clucks and broods her chickens, unconscious that to the end of the world she is part and parcel of a revelation of God to man. The sheep that bleat from the pastures, the hungry wolves that blink in the forest, the serpent that glides noiselessly in the grass, the raven that flies heavily across the field. The lily over which his shadow passes, the plough, the sickle, the wain, the barn, the flail, the threshing floor, all of them are consecrated priests, unrobed teachers, revelators that see no vision themselves, but that bring to us thoughts of truth, contentment, hope and love. All are ministers of God the whole earth doth praise him, and show forth his glory!"  Henry Ward Beecher.

Monday, January 06, 2014

 “If you shake the tree, you can bring down fruit, no doubt; but I remember when a boy that persuasion to get out of bed early was the thought of the large white apples that lay beneath the trees, awaiting the first comer – that had dropped upon the grass in the silent night, almost without a breath of wind to stir the branches. Now, I think every man ought to carry his boughs so full of fruits, that, like the apples which drop from the silent dew, they will fall by the weight of their own ripeness for whoever needs to be refreshed. We should go home to the threshing floor like a great harvest wagon full of sheaves, which at every jolt casts down ears for the gleaners, and stray seeds for the birds, and now and then a chance handful, which, blown by winds into nooks and corners, comes up to grow, and to bless another generation.” H.W. Beecher.

   “As when one, walking the winter street, sees a door opened for some one to enter, and the red, warm light streams a moment forth, and the forms of gay children are running to greet the comer, and genial music sounds, though the door shuts and leaves the night black, yet it cannot shut back again all that the eye, the ear, the heart, and the imagination have seen – so in the 23rd Psalm, though it is but a moment’s opening of the soul, there are emitted truths of peace and consolation that will never be absent from the world.

  The Twenty-third psalm is the nightingale of the psalms. It is small, of a homely feather, singing shyly out of obscurity; but, O, it has filled the air of the whole world with melodious joy, greater than the heart can conceive. Blessed be the day on which that psalm was born.”  H.W. Beecher.