As part of my devotions this year, I'm reading The One Year Book of Christian History by E. Michael and Sharon Rusten. Each entry tells about a Christian from the past and what occurred on that day's date in history in relation to that person. Because I love learning about people from the past, this has been a perfect addition to my quiet time.
Last week, one of the entries was about George Gillespie who was born in 1613. He died when he was 36, so his life was short, even for that day and age, but he had a tremendous impact on the Church of Scotland, which was Presbyterian. (Later King Charles I forced the Episcopal government of the Church of England upon the Presbyterian Church of Scotland, and the Parliament, to make a point, removed Gillespie's tombstone and had it publicly broken into pieces.)
However, the paragraph that struck me the most about this great orator and thinker was the story of Gillespie's notebook:
While listening to an opponent and preparing to respond, Gillespie appeared to be taking very detailed notes. After Gillespie presented his persuasive response, men sitting beside him found nothing about the speech in the notebook. Instead, they found in Latin such notes as: "Lord, send light," "Lord, give assistance," and "Lord, defend thine own cause."
Wow, what a great object lesson! I want to be that believer who prays without ceasing, especially if I find myself in a debate or disagreement. Instead of leaning upon my own understanding (which is often quite limited), I want to trust God to give me the right words … including the willingness to say, if the occasion calls for it, "You know, you're right."
Lord, send light.
Lord, give assistance.
Lord, defend Your own cause.