To Ponder:

“And the Lord God prepared a gourd, and made it to come up over Jonah, and soon it spread its broad leaves over Jonah’s head, shading him from the sun. This eased some of his discomfort, and Jonah was very grateful for the gourd. But God also prepared a worm! When the morning rose the next day, it smote the gourd so that it soon died and withered away.” Jonah 4:6-7. There is surely great comfort in the thought that the bounds of our life are divinely appointed. Our lots in life, our occupations, our positions, our dwellings, what the fatalist calls ‘our destinies’, what heathen mythology attributed to ‘the Fates’; all this is marked out by Him who “sees the end from the beginning.” It is He who takes us to our sweet shelters of prosperity, with their sparkling brooks of joy. It is He who, when He sees fit, sends the worm. Oh, it is our comfort to know, in this mysterious, raveled, varied life of ours, that the Great Craftsman has the threads of our existence in His own hands; weaving the complex pattern, evolving good out of evil, and order out of confusion. (John MacDuff, “The Prophet of Fire” 1877)

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