My only causes of complaint

My only causes of complaint

(Letters of John Newton)

I am blessed with perfect health, and all things have been well with us abroad and at home.

My only causes of complaint arise from my depraved nature and the workings of indwelling sin. I wish I was more humbled for them, and watchful against them.

I trust I do, in some measure, know what manner of people the Lord’s redeemed ought to be, and I hope sincerely to be growing and pressing forward. But indeed, I am not what I would be, or should be.

I would be thankful—few have more evident causes.
I would be humble—none can have greater reason.
I would be more spirituallyminded—for even my experience tells me that all below is vanity. Surely my lot is peculiarly favored, for the Lord has wonderfully anticipated and exceeded my wishes on every hand. But without the light of His countenance, all is faint and tasteless.

Blessed be God for the news of a better world, where there will be no sin, change, or defect, forever!

Let us praise Him, likewise, that He has appointed means of grace and seasons of refreshment here below—for a throne of grace, a precious Bible, and returning ordinances. These are valuable privileges, and so they appear to us when our hearts are in a lively frame. Then everything appears little and worthless, in comparison with communion with God. O for a coal of fire from the heavenly altar to warm our frozen hearts! O for a taste of divine love and a glimpse of glory—that we might mount up as with eagle’s wings!

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