Skip to content ↓

We Do Not Know Until…

We Do Not Know Until

C.S. Lewis famously said that while God whispers to us in our pleasures, he shouts to us in our pains. And, indeed, as we pass through trials and afflictions we find that God speaks his truths to us in fresh and encouraging ways. And then it’s also true that we tend not to appreciate our pleasures until they are contrasted by pains—and that’s the point of this lovely quote by J.R. Miller which I trust you’ll enjoy reading and reflecting upon.

We do not know what God is to us—until, in some way, we lose the sense of his presence and the consciousness of his love. This is true of all our blessings. We do not know their value to us until they are lost or imperiled.

We do not prize health until it is shattered and broken, and we can never have it restored again.

We do not recognize the richness and splendor of youth until it has fled, with all its glorious opportunities, and worlds cannot buy it back.

We do not appreciate the comforts and blessings of Providence until we have been deprived of them, and are driven out of warm homes into the cold paths of a dreary world.

We do not estimate the value of our facilities for education and improvement, until the period of these opportunities is gone, and we must enter the hard battle of life unfurnished and unequipped.

We do not know how much our friends are to us—until they lie before us silent and cold. Ofttimes the vacant chair, or the deep, unbroken loneliness about us—is the first revealer of the worth of one we have never duly prized.

The lesson, of course, is to reflect on every blessing as we enjoy it and to return thanks to God for each and every one.

  • A La Carte Collection cover image

    Weekend A La Carte (February 24)

    A La Carte: Wherever he leads, he’ll go / Britain’s loneliest sheep / Helping your teen with porn / How do the Arminian and Calvinist views of election differ? / Exposing the good in digital distractions / Kindle deals / and more.

  • Free Stuff Fridays (Coram Deo Pastors Conference)

    This week the blog and this giveaway are sponsored by the Coram Deo Pastors Conference. Dear brother pastor, In a spirit of prayerful expectation, I want to invite you to the Coram Deo Pastors Conference. This new event is hosted by Clearly Reformed (a new ministry I help to lead) and Christ Covenant Church (where…

  • The Kindness of God

    God’s Goodness in a Cruel World

    There is much to love and appreciate about our God, much for which we ought to give him praise and thanks. One of the attributes we may consider too seldom is his goodness, and as an aspect or component of his goodness, his kindness. And that is the subject of

  • A La Carte Collection cover image

    A La Carte (February 23)

    A La Carte: Order, preparation, and the Spirit’s leading / Desecration at St. Patrick’s Cathedral / Why did God stigmatize the disabled? / Who would I be if I was happy? / 7 parenting errors that can influence adult children to leave the faith / and more.

  • A La Carte Collection cover image

    A La Carte (February 22)

    A La Carte: Ice, wind, and unanswered prayers / Was it all a waste? / Prepping for the impending apocalypse / The best analogy for the Trinity / Getting to stop by woods on a snowy evening / Bible translation and AI / and more.

  • Like an iPhone

    Like an iPhone, Only Much More So

    Can I confess something to you? There’s one thing Aileen does that really bugs me. We will be talking together and enjoying one another’s company. But then, as we chat, I’ll hear the telltale buzz of her phone. And I can tell that I’ve lost her. I can see it in the look on her…