And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt. Matthew 26:39.

We may mark out a course for ourselves which may be born of our own ambitions or of some selfish purposes. The Lord knows the end from the beginning. He understands the relation that each man should sustain to God and to his fellow man. The Lord may see that one man's connection with men of a certain disposition or character will affect those with whom he associates to their injury. He may not be one who can reason clearly from cause to effect. The men with whom he is brought in connection may be just the ones who will not help him where he needs help.

The linking together of certain elements may produce unfavorable results. Therefore man cannot trust to his own judgment. Experience will convince him of his mistake. The Lord purposes that which will be the greatest spiritual benefit to the soul which is in the balances, ready to begin some new enterprise which means more than he himself anticipates. What should such an one do? His only safety lies in putting his preferences and his plans on one side, saying, “Not my will, but Thy will, O Lord, be done.” ...

In the smallest as well as the largest matters, the first great question is, What is God's will in the matter; for His will is my will. “To obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams” (1 Samuel 15:22). Who is he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good? One man may be required by God to do a work and stand in a position that is peculiarly trying and taxing. The Lord has a work for him to do and he risks his life, his future eternal life, in standing in that place. This was the position Christ occupied when He came to our world, entering into conflict with the rebel leader of the fallen angels. God devised a plan, and Christ accepted the position. He consented to meet the foe singlehanded, as every human being must do. He was provided with all the heavenly powers to aid Him in this great conflict; and man, if he walked in the way and will of God, is provided with the same keeping power. The same heavenly intelligences minister unto those who shall be heirs of salvation, that they may overcome every temptation, great or small, as Christ overcame. But anyone who places himself in a position of peril from any motive but obedience to the will of God will fall under the power of temptation....

No one is secure who thinks it is his privilege to choose for himself.—Letter 22, February 3, 1899, to a businessman.

From The Upward Look - Page 48

The Upward Look