by Dr. Ray Van Neste, UNION UNIVERSITY

 

Do you find yourself on Monday feeling your soul is scorched, terribly aware of your inadequacies, fearful of what is to come?

Since God is still in heaven and His steadfast Word declares His love for you, just carry on and do the next thing. Take the next step of obedience.

Do you worry how your children will turn out, what the future will hold for your church, how the finances will look at the end of the month?

Resist the allure of self pity, and just take the next step of obedience. We are typically given enough grace just for the next step. Fret not about what lies around the bend. Perform faithfully the next step, and we will make it home safely in the end.

This poem is a balm to my soul–an anonymous poem popularized by Elisabeth Elliot entitled “Doe the Nexte Thynge.”

From an old English parsonage down by the sea
There came in the twilight a message to me;
Its quaint Saxon legend, deeply engraven,
Hath, it seems to me, teaching from Heaven.
And on through the doors the quiet words ring
Like a low inspiration: “DO THE NEXT THING.”

Many a questioning, many a fear,
Many a doubt, hath its quieting here.
Moment by moment, let down from Heaven,
Time, opportunity, and guidance are given.
Fear not tomorrows, child of the King,
Trust them with Jesus, do the next thing

Do it immediately, do it with prayer;
Do it reliantly, casting all care;
Do it with reverence, tracing His hand
Who placed it before thee with earnest command.
Stayed on Omnipotence, safe ‘neath His wing,
Leave all results, do the next thing.

Looking for Jesus, ever serener,
Working or suffering, be thy demeanor;
In His dear presence, the rest of His calm,
The light of His countenance be thy psalm,
Strong in His faithfulness, praise and sing.
Then, as He beckons thee, do the next thing.

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This was quoted on Justin Taylor’s blog, BETWEEN TWO WORLDS; September 8, 2015