Except as they are used by Christ

Just so far as the Lord shall give us grace to suffer for Christ, to suffer with Christ, just so far does he honor us. Afflictions cannot sanctify us, except as they are used by Christ, as his mallet and his chisel. Our joys and our efforts cannot make us ready for heaven, apart from the hand of Jesus who fashioneth our hearts aright, and prepareth us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light. Our griefs cannot mar the melody of our praise; we reckon them to be the bass part of our life’s song. This vale of tears is but the pathway to the better country; this world of woe is but the stepping-stone to a world of bliss.

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