Friday, October 7, 2011

Seeing Providence in our economic circumstances (John Flavel)

Debates about economic issues dominate the news and the political discourse in Washington. Slogans and buzzwords fill the air. One man's "economic justice" is another man's "class warfare". One group yells about corporate greed and the evils of big business while another excoriates big government. I'll admit I'm much more sympathetic to the arguments of the first group, and I'll continue to be a participant in these debates since they involve issues that have affected my family. But through it all the child of God can thankfully rest in the fact that God is working even our economic circumstances for our good, and his glory.

I love this quote from John Flavel (The Mystery of Providence).

Though the wisdom of Providence has ordered you a lower and poorer condition than others, yet consider how many there are that are lower than you in the world. You have but little of the world, yet others have less. Read the description of those persons (Job 30:4, etc.). If God has given you but a small portion of the world, yet if you are godly He has promised never to forsake you (Heb. 13:5). Providence has ordered that condition for you which is really best for your eternal good. If you had more of the world than you have, your heads and hearts might not be able to manage it to your advantage. A small boat must have but a narrow sail. You have not lacked hitherto the necessities of life, and are commanded 'having food and raiment (though none of the finest) to be therewith content.' 'A little that a righteous man hath is better than the riches of many wicked' (Ps. 37:16): better in the acquisition, sweeter in the fruition, and more comfortable in the account.

Quote from The Mystery of Providence, p. 78 [italics emphasis mine]

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