ARE YOU A BRUISED FLOWER?

bruised flower

It is in times of soul abasement, that the . . .

love,

tenderness, and

grace of the Holy Spirit are better known.

As a Comforter, as a Revealer of Jesus, we are,

perhaps, more fully led into an acquaintance with

the work of the Spirit in seasons of soul abasement

than at any other time. The mode and time of His

divine manifestation are thus beautifully predicted:

“He shall come down like rain upon the mown grass:

as showers that water the earth.”  Psalm 72:6

Observe . . .

the gentleness,

the silence, and

the sovereignty of His operation: “He shall come

down like rain.” How characteristic of the blessed

Spirit’s grace!

Then mark the occasion on which He descends.

It is at the time of the soul’s deep prostration . . .

the waving grass is mowed,

the lovely flower is laid low,

the fruitful stem is broken,

that which was beautiful, fragrant, and precious is cut down . . .

the fairest first to fade,

the loveliest first to die,

the fondest first to depart.

Then, when . . .

the blessing is gone,

and the spirit is bowed,

when the heart is broken,

the mind is dejected, and

the world seems clad in wintry desolation and gloom,

the Holy Spirit, in all the . . .

softening,

reviving,

comforting, and

refreshing influence of His grace, descends,

speaks of the beauty of Jesus, leads to the

grace of Jesus, lifts the bowed soul, and

reposes it on the bosom of Jesus!

Precious and priceless, then, beloved, are the

seasons of a believer’s humiliation. They tell . . .

of the soul’s emptiness,

of Christ’s fullness;

of the creature’s insufficiency,

of Christ’s all sufficiency;

of the world’s poverty,

of Christ’s affluence.

They create . . .

a necessity which Jesus supplies,

a void which Jesus fills,

a sorrow which Jesus soothes,

a desire which Jesus satisfies.

They endear the cross of the incarnate God,

they reveal the hidden glory of Christ’s humiliation,

they sweeten prayer,

they lift the soul to God.

Are you as a bruised flower?

Are you as a  broken stem?

Does some heavy trial now bow you in the dust?

Oh never, perhaps, were you so truly beautiful;

never did your grace send forth such fragrance,

or your prayers ascend with so sweet an odor;

never did faith, and hope, and love develop their

hidden glories so richly, so fully as now!

In the eyes of a wounded, a bruised, and a

humbled Christ, you were never more lovely, and

never more precious to His heart than now . . .

pierced by His hand,

smitten by His rod,

humbled by His chastisement,

laid low at His feet,

condemning yourself,

justifying Him,

taking to yourself all the shame, and

ascribing to Him all the glory!

(by Octavius Winslow, 1808-1878)

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