Tozer Devotional

Sun, September 10, 2017

Dealing With the Roots of Fretfulness

The Holy Spirit in Psalm 37:1 admonishes us to beware of irritation in our religious lives: "Do not fret because of evil men or be envious of those who do wrong."

The word "fret" comes to us from the Anglo-Saxon, and carries with it such a variety of meanings as bring a rather pained smile to our faces. Notice how they expose us and locate us behind our disguises. The primary meaning of the word is to eat, and from there it has been extended with rare honesty to cover most of the manifestations of an irritable disposition. "To eat away; to gnaw; to chafe; to gall; to vex; to worry; to agitate; to wear away"; so says Webster, and all who have felt the exhausting, corrosive effects of fretfulness know how accurately the description fits the facts.

Now, the grace of God in the human heart works to calm the agitation that normally accompanies life in such a world as ours. The Holy Spirit acts as a lubricant to reduce the friction to a minimum and to stop the fretting and chafing in their grosser phases. But for most of us the problem is not as simple as that. Fretfulness may be trimmed down to the ground and its roots remain alive deep within the soul, there growing and extending themselves all unsuspected, sending up their old poisonous shoots under other names and other appearances.

Verse

Do not fret because of evil men or be envious of those who do wrong. Psalm 37:1

Thought

Fretfulness can rob us of the peace and joy of Christ. We are easy prey to fretfulness when our gaze is fixed on people and circumstances rather than upon God before whom we are to be still and wait patiently (Psm. 37:7).

Prayer

Thank You, Lord, You are God, not me!

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“What I believe about God is the most important thing about me.”

A. W. Tozer, a modern day prophet, was a key figure in The Christian and Missionary Alliance. His legacy reaches through time and has impacted countless millions. A prolific author and pastor, Tozer was known for his emphasis on the deeper life movement. His message, informed as it was by A.B. Simpson the founder of The Alliance, brought the missionary call to a massive audience. A series of his sermons are available as audio files.

bookHis books have been published around the world and in many languages. This devotional was compiled from the The Size of the Soul Chapter 16 - The Corrosive Effects of a Fretful Spirit

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