The Saint's Portion!
James Smith, 1842
"You are my portion, O Lord!" Psalm 119:57
This is the language of every Christian's heart and life! The generality of the Lord's family are poor in this world — they have no portion of an earthly kind. But they know the Lord — He has revealed Himself to them in His gracious character; He has given them a saving interest in Himself; and they say, "You are my portion, O Lord!"
He who has God for His portion — must not expect much besides. The Lord is enough, and He makes many of His people prove this, in a way they little expected. They must make a portion of Him. He possesses all they can possibly want. He communicates in wisdom and grace. He has enough to make them happy in the absence of all things besides; but nothing can make the spiritual mind happy in His absence.
He is the sun which enlightens, enlivens, and quickens them!
He is the shield which guards, protects, and preserves them!
He is the bread which sustains, strengthens, and revives them!
He is all they want — and without Him they have nothing.
They are often surprised when Providence strips them, and they are left as Job was — naked, friendless, poor, and destitute. But this is just the Lord bringing them to the test. They had said, "You are my portion, O Lord!" Whereas it is now evident that they reckoned those things of which God has stripped them — as a part of their portion. They considered them as necessary; whereas, however much they may add to our outward comfort, they are not absolutely essential to our well-being.
The Lord is an all-sufficient portion; he who possesses the Lord, may say as Jacob to Esau, "Take the present, my brother — seeing I have all things."
The Lord is an all-comprehending portion; all things are in Him, from Him, by Him, and for Him.
While He is rich — how can we be poor?
While He is able — how can we be left to want?
While He is love — how can we be miserable? "Happy is the man who dwells in secret with the Almighty, and abides under the shadow of His wings!"
Is God your portion? If so, your light afflictions are but for a moment; and they will work out for you a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory. All your trials — are mercies! Every cross — is a real blessing! God is dealing with you as with a child which He loves tenderly. He is now, in this affliction, doing you good with His whole heart, and with His whole soul. Oh, believe that God, your God, is love! He declares it in His word, proves it in all His dealings, and will fully reveal it to your soul's eternal satisfaction in Heaven!
Let not Satan persuade you that there is wrath in your trials;
or that you are not dear to your God. He says, "Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down His life for His friends! God commends His love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." Died for us, to bring us honorably to God; died for us, to deliver us from the present evil world; died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, live or die — we may live together with Him.
Take up your home then in your God; make Him the subject of your meditation, the center of your joy, the object of your love, your soul-satisfying portion; so shall you sing at the last, "My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever!" Psalm 73:26
From pole to pole let others roam,
And search in vain for bliss;
My soul is satisfied at home —
The Lord my portion is.
His grace and mercy fix my love,
His blood removes my fear;
And, while he pleads for me above,
His arm preserves me here.
His word of promise is my food,
His Spirit is my guide;
Thus daily is my strength renewed,
And all my needs supplied!
For him I count as gain each loss;
Him, though despised, I own;
Well may I glory in His cross,
While He prepares my crown!