Oswald Chambers, the everyday C. S. Lewis

I wish I could have lived when and where C. S. Lewis spoke on the radio! (i.e. England during World War I.) Unfortunately (or fortunately), I was yet far from being born, so I will just have to read his words on the page. Still, he writes of things more universal in a way that explains huge concepts to an average person. Like a theological dissertation for the layman. You get a whole lot out of reading him, but once you are convinced and understand, his job is done.

Lewis is a ‘lifetime’ intellectual writer that convinces you once for a lifetime when he gets you to start thinking a certain way.

Oswald Chambers, on the other hand, writes short passages about the daily heart troubles that a person comes across. Trust. Faith in the unseen. Repentance. Accepting forgiveness. Obedience. Issues like this come up daily, multiple times a day. You always forget, and you always need to be told to remember.

Chambers is an ‘everyday’ counsellor writer that convinces you any time any day whenever you need to stop thinking a certain way and restart the right way.

I’m  not saying they play these roles exclusively, just that they tend towards them. They both write with an amazing tone of kindly and fatherly surety. Since more people know about C. S. Lewis than Oswald Chambers, I shall post some selections below for your perusing.

May 30th

“Lord, I will follow Thee; but…” – Luke 9:61

Supposing God tells you to do something which is an enormous test to your common sense, what are you going to do? Hang back? If you get into the habit of doing a thing in the physical domain, you will do it every time until you break the habit determinedly; and the same is true spiritually. Again and again you will get up to what Jesus  Christ wants, and every time you will turn back when it comes to the point, until you abandon resolutely. “Yes, but — supposing I do obey God in this matter, what about…?” “Yes, I will obey God if He will let me use my common sense, but don’t ask me to take a step in the dark.” Jesus Christ demands of the man who trusts Him the same reckless sporting spirit that the natural man exhibits. If a man is going to do anything worth while, there are times when he has to risk everything on his leap, and in the spiritual domain Jesus Christ demands that you risk everything you hold by common sense and leap into what He says, and immediately you do, you find that what He says fits on as solidly as common sense. At the bar of common sense Jesus Christ’s statements may seem mad; but bring them to the bar of faith, and you begin to find with awestruck spirit that they are the words of God. Trust entirely in God, and when He brings you to the venture, see that you take it. We act like pagans in a crisis, only one out of a crowd is daring enough to bank his faith in the character of God.

June 4th

“For He hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” – Hebrews 13:5

What line does my thought take? Does it turn to what God says or to what I fear? Am I learning to say not what God says, but to say something after I have heard what He says? “He hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me.”

“I will in no wise fail thee” — not for all my sin and selfishness and stubbornness and waywardness. Have I really let God say to me that He will never fail me? If I have listened to this say-so of God’s then let me listen again.

“Neither will I in any wise forsake thee.” Sometimes it is not difficulty that makes me think God will forsake me, but drudgery. There is no Hill Difficulty to climb, no vision given, nothing wonderful or beautiful, just the commonplace day in and day out — can I hear God’s say-so in these things?

We have the idea that God is going to do some exceptional thing, that He is preparing and fitting us for some extraordinary thing by and bye, but as we go on in grace we find that God is glorifying Himself here and now, in the present minute. If we have God’s say-so behind us, the most amazing strength comes, and we learn to sing in the ordinary days and ways.

Taken from My Utmost for His Highest.


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