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I Calmly Leave It There

March 5, 2011

“Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints” (Ps. 116:15).

Devotional It is solemnly true that there is a “time to die.” Ah! moving thought—a “time to die!” A time when this mortal conflict will be over, when this heart will cease to feel sorrow, when this head will not ache, when these eyes will weep no more—best and holiest of all—a time “when this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality” (1 Cor. 15:53), and we shall see Christ as he is, and be like him (1 John 3:2). If this is so, then, O Christian, why this anxious, trembling fear? Your time of death, with all its attendant circumstances, is in the Lord’s hand. Everything is appointed and arranged by him who loves you and who redeemed you—infinite goodness, wisdom, and faithfulness consults your highest happiness in each circumstance of your departure. The final sickness cannot come, the “last enemy” cannot strike, until he himself bids it. Everything is in his hand. And his hand is in everything. Therefore, calmly, trustingly, leave life’s closing scene with him. You cannot die away from Jesus. Whether your spirit wings its flight at home or abroad, amid strangers or friends, by a lingering process or by a sudden stroke, in brightness or in gloom, Jesus will be with you; and, upheld by his grace, and cheered with his presence, you shall triumphantly exclaim, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me” (Ps. 23:4), bearing your dying testimony to the faithfulness of God, and to the preciousness of his promises. My time to die is in your hand, O Lord, and there I calmly leave it.

Morning Thoughts for Today, 2.17.11, from the daily devotional of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church.

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