Mission Devotional - April 15, 2016
"My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"
Today's Devotional Reading
We here behold the Saviour in the depth of his sorrows. No other place so well shows the griefs of Christ as Calvary, and no other moment at Calvary is so full of agony as that in which his cry rends the air - My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" At this moment physical weakness was united with acute mental torture from the shame and ignominy through which he had to pass; and to make his grief culminate with emphasis, he suffered spiritual agony surpassing all expression, resulting from the departure of his Father's presence. This was the black midnight of his horror; then it was that he descended the abyss of suffering. No man can enter into the full meaning of these words. Some of us think at times that we could cry, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" There are seasons when the brightness of our Father's smile is eclipsed by clouds and darkness; but let us remember that God never does really forsake us. It is only a seeming forsaking with us, but in Christ's case it was a real forsaking. We grieve at a little withdrawal of our Father's love; but the real turning away of God's face from his Son, who shall calculate how deep the agony which it caused him?
In our case, our cry is often dictated by unbelief: in his case, it was the utterance of a dreadful fact, for God had really turned away from him for a season. O thou poor, distressed soul, who once lived in the sunshine of God's face, but art now in darkness, remember that he has not really forsaken thee. God in the clouds is as much our God as when he shines forth in all the lustre of his grace; but since even the thought that he has forsaken us gives us agony, what must the woe of the Saviour have been when he exclaimed, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" - Charles Haddon Spurgeon, Morning & Evening: Daily Readings
Prayer for the church, for others, for myself
After more than 20 years of church planting in Japan, God has led Ron and Amy Barber to a new challenge of equipping the next generation of church planters. Their new ministry at IGSL in the Philippines prepares students for ministry in cross-cultural contexts around the world. The Barbers were our guests at the recent Global Mission Conference. Pray for them as they make plans to start their new work in the Philippines in June.
As a ministry of the Presbyterian Church in America, RUF holds to the core beliefs of historic Christianity which motivate a heart for God and love for the university. CSPC supports RUF on two college campuses - UT Knoxville and Carson Newman. Pray today for Matt Howell at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and for RUF as it connects with students on both campuses.