No Cause for Sadness
James Smith, 1842
"Why do you look so sad today?" Genesis 40:7
Thus Joseph addressed the officers of Pharaoh — and thus I would address you, my poor downcast brother. Are you dwelling upon your afflictions, privations, and troubles? Oh look from them — to Jesus! They all bid you to direct your attention to Him. Dwelling upon yourself, or your bad circumstances — will only make you look sadly; but looking to Jesus — will enlighten, enliven, and comfort you! He is the health of your countenance and your God. Look unto Him and be lightened, and you shall not be ashamed. "Oh taste and see, how good the Lord is! He is very gracious and of great mercy!" He only designs to wean you from all others — that you may be satisfied and filled with Himself! He wishes to be your portion, your comfort, and your all. He desires that you should make a God of Him. He is ready to save you, able to deliver you, willing to bless you.
All your ways are before Him; He marks every step you take; and knows every foe that assails you. He will keep you as the apple of His eye. If you did but believe how much He loves you, even while He afflicts you — you could not look sadly; you would sing, "Sweet affliction!"
The Holy Spirit is your Comforter; pray him to take of the things of Jesus — and show them unto you; to lead you into truth — and unfold the glorious promises and perfections of Jehovah to your view. He is . . .
the revealer of the things of God,
the manifester of Jesus, and
the sanctifier and instructor of the soul.
You must realize your dependence upon Him, confess your obligations to Him, and render the glory that is due unto His name.
Beware how you slight the personality, office, or operations of the Holy Spirit! Else perhaps you will have to exclaim with the church of old, "The Comforter that should relieve my soul, is far from me!" "Grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you are sealed unto the day of redemption." "Sow unto the Spirit, and you shall from the Spirit reap life everlasting."
Joy and peace are the fruits of believing. He is the Spirit of faith; He produces, strengthens, and directs the faith of the Lord's people. They are indebted to Him, for all the comforts and consolations they enjoy. Talk not then, of your lack of faith — but pray for more of that blessed grace, as the poor man in the gospel, "Lord, I believe — help my unbelief!" Call upon God, until the Spirit is poured out from on high.
Come, Holy Spirit, come;
Let your bright beams rise;
Dispel the darkness from my mind,
And open my blind eyes.
Cheer my desponding heart,
O heavenly Paraclete;
Give me to lie with humble hope,
At my Redeemer's feet.
Revive my drooping faith;
My doubts and fears remove;
And kindle in my breast, the flames
Of never-dying love!
Convince me of my sin,
Lead me to Jesus' blood;
And to my wondering view reveal
The secret love of God!