Lately, I have been reading The Life and Diary of David Brainerd (edited by Jonathan Edwards; Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 1949). This book is having a profound impact on my life and revealing to me my lack of passion for Jesus Christ, my lack of passion for those that do not know Jesus Christ, and how little of what I do is for God's glory and more often for my own glory. David Brainerd was an early American missionary to the native indians in the early 1700's. He lived for the glory of God with eternity always in view, had an intimate and passionate relationship with God, and had a passion for the lost. He was a man of prayer, a man of humility, and a man of the Word. For more on David Brainerd's life see the excellent article by John Piper: http://www.desiringgod.org/library/biographies/90brainerd.html. The full text of the book can also be read online: http://www.revival-library.org/index.html?http://www.revival-library.org/catalogues/world1/edwards-brainerd/title.htm. Here are some great quotes from David Brainerd's journal:
"One hour with God infinitely exceeds all the pleasures and delights of this lower world" (pg. 74).
"Where then is boasting? Surely it is excluded when we think how we are dependent on God for the being and every act of grace. Oh, if ever I get to heaven it will be because God wills, and nothing else; for I never did anything of myself but get away from God! My soul will be astonished at the unsearchable riches of divine grace when I arrive at the mansions, which the blessed Saviour is gone before to prepare" (pg. 75).
"...I cried to God to cleanse me from my exceeding filthiness, to give me repentance and pardon. I then began to find it sweet to pray; and could think of undergoing the greatest sufferings, in the cause of Christ, with pleasure. Found myself willing, if God should so order it, to suffer banishment form my native land, among the heathen, that I might do something for their salvation, in distresses and deaths of any kind" (pg. 77).
"I wanted not the favor of man to lean upon; for I knew Christ's favor was infinitely better, and that it was no matter when, nor where, nor how Christ should send me, nor what trials He should still exercise me with, if I might be prepared for His work and will" (pg. 79).
"I felt the power of intercession for precious, immortal soulds; for the advancement of the kingdom of my dear Lord and Saviour in the world; and withal, a most sweet resignation and even consolation and joy in the thoughts of suffering hardships, distresses, and even death itself, in the promotion of it. Had special enlargement in pleading for the enlightening and conversion of the poor heathen" (pg. 80).
"I wanted to wear out my life for His service, and for His glory" (pg. 81).
"All I want is to be more holy, more like my dear Lord. Oh, for sanctification! My very soul pants for the complete restoration of the blessed image of my Saviour, that I may be fit for the blessed enjoyments and employments of the heavenly world" (pg. 82).
"Farewell, vain world; my soul can bid Adieu:
My Saviour's taught me to abandon you.
Your charms may gratify a sensual mind;
Not please a soul wholly for God design'd.
Forbear to entice, cease then my soul to call:
'Tis fix'd through grace; my God shall by my ALL.
While He thus lets me heavenly glories view,
Your beauties fade, my heart's no room for you" (pg. 82).
"Jesus, my Lord, my only love,
Possess my soul, nor thence depart:
Grant me kind visits, heavenly Dove;
My God shall then have all My heart" (pg. 83).
"Oh, that I could spend every moment of my life to His glory!" (pg. 83).
"Thirsting desires and insatiable longings possessed my soul after perfect holiness. God was so precious to my soul that the world with all its enjoyments was infinitely vile. I had no more value for the favor of men than for pebbles. The Lord was my ALL; and that He overruled all greatly delighted me. I think my faith and dependence on God scarce ever rose so high. I saw Him such a fountain of goodness that it seemed impossible I should distrust Him again, or be any way anxious about anything that should happen to me" (pg. 84).
"I felt that all my unhappiness arose from my being a sinner" (pg. 84).
"Nothing grieves me so much as that I cannot live constantly to God's glory. I could bear any desertion or spiritual conflicts, if I could but have my heart all the while burning within me with love to God and desires of His glory" (pg. 84).
More quotes to come...