Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Life of Brother Lawrence, Part 7

My last blog I left off talking about how Brother Lawrence was overwhelmed by God's blessings. Brother Lawrence was so humbled by these gifts from God, that he would pray: "It is too much, O Lord! It is too much for me. Give, if it please Thee, these kinds of favors and consolations to sinners and to the people who do not know Thee, in order to attract them to Thy service..." This is a wonderful prayer, in that Brother Lawrence believes that by experiencing the favor of God in their lives, sinners will come to want to know Jesus. It is like what the apostle John said in John 20:30-31, "Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. 31But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name." John wanted the people to know about Jesus' miracles, but many people have experienced His miracles and then believed.
Brother Lawrence took the 2 great commands of Jesus seriously: love the Lord your God with all your heart and soul and mind and strength, and love your neighbor as yourself. Because of this, Brother Lawrence regarded those around him with the same affection he felt for the Lord. He believed it also exemplified what Jesus said, that what we do to the least of the brethren, we do to Him. So this led him to be determined to serve others. "He assisted the poor in their needs, as much as was in his power." With this in mind, we should be challenged to find ways to serve others (especially the poor and the outcast).
"Death did not frighten Brother Lawrence at all. On his deathbed, he displayed marks of a stability, a resignation, and a joy that were quite extraordinary...If he had loved God deeply during his life, he did not love Him any less at death." How about you? Do you fear death? Do you know that You will be with God in heaven when You die? You can be as assured as Brother Lawrence was. We are told in 1 John 5:12, "Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life."
On February 12th, 1691, Brother Lawrence died at 80 years of age. At the end of the book it says (p. 94), "It is easy to conclude that his death was precious in the sight of the Lord, that it was very quickly followed by his reward, that he is now enjoying glory; and that his faith has been rewarded by clear vision, his hopes by possession, and his budding charity by a consummate love." I hope that I live my life to even half the degree of service Brother Lawrence did, and look forward to my time to be with God. I challenge you to do the same, so that you might enjoy a fulfilled life like Brother Lawrence!