And he said to them, “Come away by yourselves
to a desolate place and rest a while.”
Dr. J. Sidlow Baxter (1903-1999) relates that when he became pastor of a church in Scotland many years ago, he began to hear many appreciative remarks about a former deacon, who had died a few years earlier. Baxter heard how people said of this brother, “that it was almost impossible to think or speak unworthily in his presence.” They said, “He always brought a sense of God’s presence when he came into a room.” This dear follower of Christ, Baxter said, made a difference in the church’s board meetings: “If a discussion ever seemed to be getting edgy or uncharitable, he would quietly rise and lead the brethren in such a prayer, that afterward the discussion could only continue on a high spiritual plane.”*
The man’s name was William D. Longstaff. This British hymnist authored a hymn which provides us with the secret to his resemblance to the Lord Jesus Christ.
Take time to be holy, speak oft with thy Lord;
Abide in Him always, and feed on His Word.
Make friends of God’s children, help those who are weak,
Forgetting in nothing His blessing to seek.
Take time to be holy, the world rushes on;
Spend much time in secret, with Jesus alone.
By looking to Jesus, like Him thou shalt be;
Thy friends in thy conduct His likeness shall see.
Take time to be holy, let Him be thy Guide;
And run not before Him, whatever betide.
In joy or in sorrow, still follow the Lord,
And, looking to Jesus, still trust in His Word.
Take time to be holy, be calm in thy soul,
Each thought and each motive beneath His control.
Thus led by His Spirit to fountains of love,
Thou soon shalt be fitted for service above.**
Do you desire to reflect the likeness of the Lord Jesus? There is always an ongoing personal price to pay.
*Sidlow Baxter, Going Deeper, (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1959), pp. 133-134.
**Taken from “Take Time to Be Holy” by William D. Longstaff.
Taken from . . .
Renewed by the Spirit: 365 Daily Meditations
by Ralph I. Tilley
copyright © 2016 Ralph I. Tilley
(May be copied for noncommercial purposes,
not to exceed 500 copies.)