by F. T. Heath
"AND he loved her: and Isaac was comforted." (Gen. xxiv. 67) The object of his love became the minister to his comfort. He had devoted himself to her; now she is to be His comfort as she devotes herself to him; there is response in her heart to him, or there could have been no devotedness, and. devoid of either, she could be no source of comfort. A home, and his love, and his possessions were evidently not everything in the case of Isaac and Rebekah. She possessed—but she was a possession to him. Scripture speaks of his comfort, not hers. All this is very important. We are selfish naturally, and readily settle down into our own blessings, and forget the One whose devotedness to us, the objects of His love, cost Him "all that he had,'' even going through death to procure His treasure. He has loved His Rebekah, the Church, having purchased it at such infinite cost. It will be His joy to present it to Himself, His suited bride.
It is this grace which becomes the spring of devotedness now. Surely, He is, to use figurative language, comforted now—His heart refreshed and gladdened in this object of His love; but when He finds devotedness, He also finds special delight and comfort. Many followed Him; many in measure appreciated, and doubtless loved Him; but there were some who could spend their all upon Him—in whom He found response—those who in the midst of a desert scene, yielded comfort and refreshing to His spirit. It is this I desire to commend to the attention of the reader; there is no good thing but may be cultivated. A woman might argue that she did not need to be enjoined to love her husband and children—that the relationship created it, therefore how could it be otherwise; yet she is to be so admonished. (Titus ii. 4) I admit that the power for it is not in the admonition. She has worthy objects, and the effects follow if she makes them her objects. Christ must be everything to us if everything with us is to be subservient to Him. Do we accept this? or, are we contented with the abstract assertion that He is comforted, as a necessary consequence of the Church belonging to Him? Is nothing dependent on our state? When we are with Him in glory, there will be perfect and uninterrupted communion—His joy as well as His glory, ours; why should we not have the joy of realized companionship now? which if sought, is found, whatever degrees there may be in the extent of its apprehension.
Devotedness effects what nothing else can. In natural things, it has often succeeded where wisdom and strength have failed. The widow's mite, given in devotedness, had greater weight in the Lord's sight than the abundance of the rich. May the Lord incline our hearts to the good part which Mary chose. It means death to things here, but that is the highway to glory, "Every devoted thing is most holy unto the Lord . . . [it] shall surely be put to death." (Lev. xxvii. 28, 29.) Paul was a chosen vessel unto the Lord, who would shew him what great things he should suffer for His name's sake; and to us also it is given "not only to believe on him, but to suffer for his sake." (Phil. i. 29.) (Fragment found among the papers of F. T. H.)
“A Voice to the Faithful” 1897