The man who has God for his portion!
(James Smith, "Gleams of Grace" 1860)
"You are my portion, O LORD!" Psalm 119:57
If God is my portion, then I ought to be content without any other portion. He is . . .
enough in poverty,
enough in persecution,
enough in life,
enough in death,
enough for evermore!
If God gives me Himself — then it is more than as if He had given me the whole world, or ten thousand worlds like this! O how happy was the apostle Paul, who knowing God to be his portion could say, "I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in need!" Philippians 4:11-12
If God is my portion, I ought to be thankful. It is enough. There is no losing it. What dignity, what honor is conferred on the man who has God for his portion! I deserved to be stripped of everything, and to be turned out of God's presence eternally penniless, wretched, and miserable. But instead of this, God in His free grace, in His infinite mercy — gives me . . .
a city with eternal foundations,
a kingdom; more,
He gives me Himself!
God in all His glory, in all His grace — is mine!
If God is my portion, then I ought to be living upon Him. If I live upon anything outside of God — then I live upon what is finite, and will change. But if I live upon God, I live upon the infinite, and upon what is unchangeable. As a believer, I should live befitting the dignity of my lofty character, position, and prospects. The man of fortune ought not to live like the pauper. Just so, the Christian ought not to live like other men.
If God is my portion, I ought to be making a proper use of it. I should set my portion over and against . . .
all my pains and privations,
all my griefs and grievances,
all my sadnesses and sorrows.
I should look above all my trials and troubles — and rejoice that throughout eternity, I shall have . . .
eternal ease — instead of pain,
eternal plenty — instead of privation,
eternal joy — instead of grief,
eternal gladness — instead of sadness,
and eternal bliss — instead of sorrow!
Beloved, is the Lord your portion? Are you living upon Him as such?
But if God is not your portion — then what is?
Where are your thoughts most?
Where do your affections center?
After what do you pursue?
The world? It is a poor, perishing, unsatisfying portion! It will be found insufficient, unsatisfactory, and perishing! Unless God is your portion, you will be . . .
unsatisfied in life,
wretched in death, and
indescribably miserable to all eternity!
"My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever!" Psalm 73:26