Jeremiah Burroughs wrote an amazing sermon which became a sort of booklet called The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment. One of the portions of it deals with the sometimes secret and sometimes revealed will of God’s taking measures in the lives of His people. What he says is beautiful. It presents the Lord accurately, as a good Father who does whatever it takes to gain the affections of His children. Read and be blessed.
“Lamentations 3:24: ‘The Lord is my portion, saith my soul’, why should you not be satisfied and contented like God? God is contented, he is in eternal contentment in himself; now if you have that God as your portion, why should you not be contented with him alone? Since God is contented with himself alone, if you have him, you may be contented with him alone, and it may be, that is the reason why your outward comforts are taken from you, that God may be all in all to you. It may be that while you had these things they shared with God in your affection, a great part of the stream of your affection ran that way; God would have the full stream run to him now.”
The stream was broken! Your heart was divided!
I sometimes wonder about this with respect to the good things. Even the ministry, which I love could be one of those things God takes so that my heart can be presented to Him undivided. It’s both scary and comforting, if that combination can exist. He goes on…
“You know when a man has water coming to his house, through several pipes, and he finds insufficient water comes into his wash-house, he will rather stop the other pipes that he may have all the water come in where he wants it. Perhaps, then, God had a stream of your affection running to him when you enjoyed these things; yes, but a great deal was allowed to escape to the creature, a great deal of your affections ran waste. Now the Lord would not have the affections of his children to run waste; he does not care for other men’s affections, but yours are precious, and God would not have them to run waste; therefore he has cut off your other pipes that your heart might flow wholly to him”
Amazing, isn’t it? This can only produce an ever enduring confidence that He does know what He’s doing.