A Prayer: Grace to Stand or Grace to Weep

daily-devotionalsPeter had expected great security in the denial of his Saviour, and the upshot of it all was: he turned as it were into the valley of Megiddo (2 Chronicles 35:22), his head into a fountain of water, and his soul is even drenched in whole floods of sorrow. Sin is not only deceitful in depriving us of those hoped immunities which we seek for in sin, but it is also fruitful in the ample increase of evil. It not only deprives us of comfort, but it heaps misery on us.

Sin is like a great thick cloud which not only comes between the Sun of Righteousness and us, hiding the light of His countenance from us, but it also showers down on our deceived souls whole storms of woe and shame. There is ever a weeping that follows sin. Either such a desperate weeping as has that dreadful concomitant added to it: gnashing of teeth (Matthew 8:12), or such a repentant weeping as is sealed up from the mouth of Christ Himself with a blessing until the day of redemption. Blessed indeed are the tears of a converted rebel, and happy is the very misery of a mourning offender; for as water boiling and overflowing puts out the fire, which at first caused it to boil, so the tears of true repentance serve to extinguish those flames and terrors of conscience and to blot out those burning sins which first caused them to run over, by the means of Christ’s grace.

Lord, give us in the first place Thy sustaining grace which may preserve us from the danger of great and scandalous offences. But if thy wisdom finds it otherwise requisite, to punish our presumptions with a temporary desertion and withdrawal of Thy power, yet never deny us that restoring grace which may re-establish us in Thy favour. Give us, if not the grace of standing, yet the grace of weeping, that, though we cannot be innocent, we may be repentant.

Dr. Edward Reynolds was born in 1599 in Southampton, England. He received his BA degree at Oxford in 1618. In 1622, before studying for his masters, Reynolds became a chaplain to the king and preacher at Lincoln’s Inn, London. The puritanical inclinations of Dr. Reynolds were well known; his character of piety and decorum were evident even in his college years. Edward Reynolds is known as the Bishop of Norfolk, but he was bishop for only the final fifteen years of his life and ministry. Prior to that he was the rector of Braunston, Northamptonshire, for almost thirty years. Although Reynolds was a Presbyterian by conviction, he had a reputation of moderation in his church polity. This was evidenced in his role in the Westminster Assembly. He was the only member to sit on all three of the major committees on the Confession of Faith, and with his moderate spirit provided balance in the discussions.
These devotions are taken from the works of Edward Reynolds. They have been edited for thinkgospel.com. © 2013 thinkgospel.