The highest class in the school of Christ
(John Angell James, 1848)
“So that you may not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.” Hebrews 6:12
No circumstances of life–let the sufferer hear and drink in the soul-comforting thought–no circumstances of life seem to ripen the Christian so fast or so perfectly for Heaven–as the experience of sorrow and affliction. Oh! then let our comforts go, then let our eyes weep, then let our hearts bleed–if our Father is thus ripening us for everlasting fruition and inconceivable bliss!
“But patience must do its complete work, so that you may be mature and complete, lacking nothing.” James 1:4
When we are enabled to exercise the grace of patience, we have reached the highest class in the school of Christ, have nothing more to learn upon earth, and are ready and fit to depart, and to be with Jesus–and have then obtained as much grace as can be possessed, short of glory itself!
Patience then, sufferer, patience! The first moment, and the first glance of Heaven will be an infinite recompense for all that you suffer–for all that you lose on earth! If every step on earth is a step of suffering–then let each be a step of patience! …
The shower of your tears may fall–but the rays of the Sun of Righteousness must reflect the beauteous rainbow of the promise.
Christian, you make your way to glory along the path of patient resignation, which, if it is like the Valley of Weeping, and has its briars and its thorns–has also its refreshing rain-pools of heavenly consolation!~ ~ ~ ~