A Cord at a
By this I am reminded of an incident I once read, of an aged gentleman who had been broken down by hard labor yet was seeking some employment by which he could obtain means. A nobleman who had a hundred cords of wood to cut, was informed of the wish of the old gentleman. He told him that if he would cut the wood he should have one hundred dollars for the job. But the old gentleman replied, No, he could never do that. It was impossible. He was an old man, and not able to undertake such a job. "Well," said the nobleman, "we will make a different bargain. Can you cut one cord to-day? if so, I will give one dollar." The bargain was made, and the cord of wood was cut that day. "Now," said the nobleman, "you may cut another cord to-morrow;" and another cord was cut the next day; and thus the whole job was accomplished. In one hundred days the work was completed, and the laborer was in just as good health as when he commenced the work. He could take it cord by cord, but when presented to him in one large job the accomplishment of it seemed impossible.
This well represents the cases of many who are undecided. They have a desire to be Christians, yet the responsibilities of a Christian life seem so great to them that they fear they will make a failure, are almost certain they can never reach the mark if they make the attempt. But when it is taken into consideration that it is not for them to see the end of the Christian's journey; it is not for them to comprehend and accomplish it at once. Only one day at a time with its burdens and responsibilities is presented to us. Yes, dear friends, dear youth, to-morrow is not yours. It is the duties of to-day that you are to perform. If you resolve to be on the Lord's side, and come out from among the world, and be separate, and choose to be sons and daughters of the Lord Almighty, to leave the ranks of the enemy, the service of sin and of Satan, make up your mind to always do present duty. Take hold of the duties of to-day, realizing that the Lord has claims upon you, that you are responsible to your Creator; these claims are to be met only a day at a time. In the strength of God take hold believing that you can overcome for that one day. That day must be commenced with watchfulness and prayer. Learn to give your heart's best affections to God. Signify in noble work and in your conversation that you love your heavenly Father. Let him apportion to you your work.
S T January 31,1878