DURING THE REIGN OF OLIVER CROMWELL, the British government began to run low on silver for coins. Lord Cromwell sent his men to the local cathedral to see if they could find any precious metal there. After investigating, they reported: “The only silver we could find is the statues of the saints standing in the corners.”
To which the radical, outspoken soldier and statesman of England replied: “Good! We’ll melt down the saints and put them into circulation!”
Not bad theology for a proper, strait-laced Lord Protector of the Isles! In just a few words, Cromwell’s command stated the essence of authentic Christianity. Not rows of silver saints, highly polished, frequently dusted, pushed into the corners of elegant cathedrals. Not plaster people cloaked in thin layers of untarnished silver and topped with a metallic halo. But real persons. Melted saints circulating through the mainstream of humanity.
It’s the acid grind that takes the toll. Doing battle in the steaming jungle calls for shock troops in super shape.
And that is why we must be melted! It’s all part of staying “in circulation.” Those who successfully wage war with silent heroism under relentless secular pressure—ah, they are the saints who know what it means to be melted.
Here’s how Jude stated this at the far end of the New Testament:
You, dear friends, must build each other up in your most holy faith, pray in the power of the Holy Spirit, and await the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ, who will bring you eternal life. In this way, you will keep yourselves safe in God’s love. And you must show mercy to those whose faith is wavering. Rescue others by snatching them from the flames of judgment. Show mercy to still others, but do so with great caution, hating the sins that contaminate their lives.
You can opt for an easier path, sure. You can keep your own record and stay tucked away in the cedar chest of sweet dreams. Or you can get back into circulation, volunteering to be part of God’s rugged rescue team, retrieving victims from the leaping flames. It’s your decision.
Devotional content taken from Good Morning, Lord . . . Can We Talk? by Charles R. Swindoll. Copyright © 2018. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, a division of Tyndale House Ministries. All rights reserved. The full devotional can be purchased at tyndale.com.
Used with permission. All rights reserved.