In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; Ephesians 6:16
Is there anything in your life that yet keeps you from complete happiness? Certainly your faith can help. The flesh is ever cowardly and loves ease, and though it is sure of justification and sanctification, it is not happy because of the poverties, crosses, and pressures it must endure. O how faith can shine and triumph over nature and reason – not just persevere, but conquer and rejoice in tribulation! Faith can make you hard as an adamant stone, like a palm that does not break with the heaviest burdens, or oil that ever out-swims all the water that is poured over it. This is the crown and glory of faith. Faith tackles great obstacles. Small boats do fine in a calm, and ordinary men can stand up to a light breeze, but when a heavy tempest blows, and wave after wave crashes, nature yields, the spirit faints, a heart fails. To stand up against such storms and to live and reign is the work of faith. This faith has the Word as its compass, the Christ directing the helm. The greatest adversities are but the exercise and lustre of faith. Men glory when they can tame the tigers, but what is that compared to faith that makes shame, poverty, sickness, persecutions, banishment, yea, death itself calm and bearable? Christians have great advantage because of their faith. Their only error is the lack of skill or failure to use the shield of faith when a dart comes suddenly upon them. When a storm rises, immediately run and awaken your sleeping faith. Knock at its door. Do your work, O faith! Consider this medicine for your faith to drink in comfort: not the slightest trouble befalls you without the overruling eye and hand of God. He is not only our wise God, but a tender Father. He knows what you are made of measures out exactly every cross unto us as a chemist measures grains of medicine.
Over the past fifty years there has been a great resurgence of interest in the writings of the Puritans. The reading of their works has brought great benefit to the people of God in many lands. Christians from many different backgrounds and cultures owe a great debt of gratitude to those faithful pastors and preachers who continue to speak through their writings even though they have long since entered into their heavenly reward. The Puritans really knew how to teach and apply God’s Word in the Spirit’s power!
Richard Rushing has compiled this book of daily devotional readings from his favorite Puritan authors because of the great help he has gained from their works. “How thrilling it has been for me to read the Puritans on the glory and attributes of God, divine providence, fellowship with God, holiness of life and the mortification of indwelling sin, heavenly mindedness, prayer, evangelistic zeal, and trust in the Lord during times of affliction. At every turn these truths are eloquently taught, faithfully applied, and kindly offered as the subject of sweet spiritual meditation.”
This book is sent forth with the prayer that it will open a door to the vast stores of treasure to be found in the writings of the Puritans and that it will stimulate further exploration of this rich spiritual inheritance.