The Useful Man
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“And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle?”Matthew 20:6
Thomas Brooks wrote with the fresh revelation from the King James Version, translated during his childhood. His enduring book, Precious Remedies Against Satan’s Devices, has been reprinted in every century since it was first published in 1652. Anyone who reads the preface to the book will see that it is indeed worthy of reprinting, as it has sharpened the countenance of many a Christian soldier.
An unusual author of an unusual book, Brooks tells us how we should approach his writings. He shows what a man can expect from reading, IF he reads with attention. He advises:
“First, Thou must know that every man cannot be excellent, that yet may be useful. An iron key may unlock the door of a golden treasure, yea, iron can do some things that gold cannot.”
We have reached the close of this chapter in history. The sun has laid its golden head upon a pillow of velvety cloud, soon to turn its face toward the horizon. We do not have the privilege of time to walk softly, or to work slowly.
If God set you apart to refine as gold, well. But if not, do not lay around tarnishing until your turn come in the finery. Shake off the rust through much labour, and make the most of your time.
If you can’t be valuable, be useful.
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