Second Day: "The LORD IS my shepherd."
He is our present helper. There is such a tendency to put Him out of our lives. In truth He is with us all the time; in practical experience He is in the heavens, and we only wait for the day when we shall see Him. But He is yours to-day; "Lo, I am with you alway" is for you now.
Cultivate the habit of thinking of Him as at your side. Speak to Him as if He were your dearest friend. Walk with Him; go only where He would go or you could take Him. Take no step of which He could not approve. He will thus become your present help in every time of trouble and of need.
"Sometimes I'm faint and weary;
He knows that I am weak;
And, as He bids me lean on Him,
His help I gladly seek;
He leads me in the paths of light,
Beneath a sunny sky;
And so we dwell together,
My Lord and I."
We sometimes make the mistake of setting our stakes too far ahead, as marking out the time when we shall have fellowship with Him; but for to-morrow and its needs we need not pray, but "just for to-day."
Let this day mark a new experience. Begin the day by appropriating Him, with all that that means for He is yours. Then set the mark on until ten o'clock, and say, "For those two hours I will walk in the thought that He is mine. Then lengthen the time until the noon hour; and whatsoever you do, whether you eat or drink or whatsoever you do, do all to the glory of God. If half the day may be thus lived, the whole day may be.
In all this time make every act of yours true worship. As you cleanse your hands, let it draw you to Him whose blood may keep you unspotted from the world; as you put on your garments, let it remind you of Him whom you have been commanded "to put on"; as you drink, forget not Him who said, "I am ... the water of life"; and, as you eat, call to your remembrance your Lord who said, "I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger." Dr. Floyd Tompkins says, "Thus every act of every day may be like a sacrament." And a day thus lived, if repeated for a week, may become the habit of your life, and all because the Lord IS yours.
Suggestions for To-day.
1. Do not live in the past to-day; for, if you were a sinner above
all others, then God for Christ's sake "hath put away
and forgiven sin with God is remembered no more forever.
2. Do not live in the future. He will care for you to-morrow, and you may never see it. Why take thought for it?
3. Live in the present. He is yours to-day, and for all the hours of this day you will have what all the saints in all the ages have had to make them great and good.
From The Secret of a Happy Day: Quiet Hour Meditations by J. Wilbur Chapman. Boston: United Society of Christian Endeavor, ©1899.