by Octavius Winslow (1808-1878)
From first to last, from our cradle to our grave, from the earliest pang of sin’s conviction to the lastest thrill of sin’s forgiveness, from earth to heaven, this will be our testimony in all the way the Lord our God has led us in the wilderness – “He has done all things well” (Mark 7:37).
In providence and in grace, in every truth of His Word, in every lesson of His love, in every stroke of His rod, in every beam that has shone, in every cloud that has shaded, in every element that has sweetened, in every ingredient that has embittered, in all that has been mysterious, inscrutable, painful, and humiliating; in all that He gave, and in all that He took away, this testimony is His just due, and this our grateful acknowledgment through time and through eternity – “He has done all things WELL.”
Has He converted us through grace by a way we had thought the most improbable? Has He torn up all our earthly hopes by the roots? Has He thwarted our schemes, frustrated our plans, disappointed our expectations? Has He taught us in schools most trying, by a discipline most severe, and lessons most humbling to our nature? Has He withered our strength by sickness, reduced us to poverty by loss, crushed our heart by bereavement? And have we been tempted to exclaim, “All these things are against me”? Ah! no! faith will yet obtain the ascendancy, and sweetly sing:
“I know in all things that befell,
My Jesus has done all things well.”
Beloved, it must be so, for Jesus can do nothing wrong. Study the way of His providence and grace with the microscopic eye of faith, view them in every light, examine them in their minutest detail as you would the petal of a flower or the wing of an insect, and, oh, what wonders, what beauty, what marvelous adaptation would you discern in all the varied dealings with you of your glorious Lord!
And when the next wave surged, and the next cloud darkened, and the next mystery threw its veil around you, you would hopefully exclaim, ‘What new truth is He now teaching? What new glory is He now unveiling? What new wonder is He now working to arouse my admiration, to win my confidence, and to deepen my love?”