My God Shall Supply All Your Need

Sacramental Meditation XII

By John Willison, Practical Works (London: Blackie & Son, 1844), 258-60; minimally edited.

“But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Phil 4:19).

Heavenly Father, out of thy rich bounty thou wast pleased once to lay up a great stock for me in my progenitors’ hands, but they soon squandered it all away, so that I am become extremely poor and needy. Oh! what can I do in this indigent condition, but come back to thee for pity and new supplies? For ever blessed be thy name, for the reviving news thou has published in the gospel, that thou hast now laid up a new stock for bankrupt sinners in the hands of a surety that cannot fail, and hast erected a throne of grace for such as I am in time of need, where Christ Jesus, my surety, sits commissioned by thee, with glorious riches to supply my wants. Many are the needs which thou thinkest fit to leave upon me, that I might have the more errands unto this throne, and that thou mayest the oftener hear my voice. Oh pour out upon me a spirit of grace and supplication, and cause me to delight in approaching thee.

Behold, Lord, a needy creature, an object of pity, approaching to a Saviour, whose fulness is infinite! Oh how suitable is it to my wants, which are great and innumerable! I am starving, and have no bread; I am naked, and have no clothing; I am wounded, and have no cure; I am in debt, and have no money; I am polluted, and have no fountain; I am burdened, and have no rest; I have destroyed myself, and can find no help in myself. But yet there is help for me elsewhere; I have heard of the mercy of the King of Israel, and of the remedy he hath provided for those who are helpless, lost, and miserable. Wherefore, though poor, I will not despair, for thou art the Lord of the whole world, and hast opened thy treasures to the needy. Though polluted, I will not despond, for thou hast the fountain of salvation. Though naked, I will not with Adam run from thee and hide myself; nay, I will run to thee to cover me with the wool and fleece of the Lamb of God, even the spotless righteousness and innocence of my Saviour. Though I be hungry and starving, I will take encouragement from the glad tidings thou hast proclaimed in the gospel of a rich feast for the poor and needy. Lord, I come to thee as the hungry to be fed, as the naked to be clothed, as the wounded to be healed, as the cold, starving creature to the fire, as the unclean to be washed in the Fountain that is opened not to the house of David only, but even to the poorest inhabitants in Jerusalem. Glory to God, that it is so free and open to the poor and needy.

Lord, I come not to thy table because I am worthy, but because thou art rich in mercy, and promisest that “the needy shall not be forgotten, and the expectation of the poor shall not perish. And that when the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue faileth for thirst, thou the Lord wilt hear them, and open rivers in the wilderness, and fountains in the midst of the valleys.” Oh come, do as thou hast said, pity a needy, perishing creature, and fill my narrow vessel out of the ocean of thy mercy, where it will not be missed. Come to the feast of thine own appointment, and display thy fulness. Cast open the doors of thy treasures, and allow me access to Christ’s unsearchable riches. Thy word, Lord, assures me, that in all ages thou hast bestowed these riches upon the poor and needy, without money and without price. And this warrants me to plead with thee to come to thy house, where many needy beggars are gathered, and scatter thy bounty among them, and admit me to gather with them. Oh let not such a miserable object go from thy door without a crumb of the children’s bread, seeing there is bread enough in thy house, and to spare. Oh let none return ashamed from the Fountain who come expecting water. Thou hast promised to pour water upon the thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground. Oh, is there any more dry, more poor, more needy than I am! Lord, make me as thirsty as I am dry, as humble as I am poor, and as sensible as I am needy. Alas! that I have so little sense of my wants! Oh! deal not with me according to my sense of need, which is small, but deal with me according to my real need, and thy royal bounty, which is exceeding great.

Oh that I were poor and needy in my own eyes, and truly sensible of my own wants; that I am drowned in debt to the law and justice of God, owe many thousands, and have not one farthing to pay; that I am destitute of every thing that is good, can do nothing to please God, and am unworthy of the least of his mercies. Oh that I were made willing to quit all confidence in my own righteousness, duties, frames, or attainments; and well content to go entirely out of myself to Christ, for righteousness to justify me, and for his grace to renew and sanctify my nature.

Lord, I am poor, but I see God has treasured up unsearchable riches, and infinite fulness in Jesus Christ to answer all my needs; I am naked, but I see in Christ a robe of righteousness that is sufficient to cover me, and a whole elect world; I am a starving creature, but in Christ there is the bread of life, and the waters of life for my soul; I am foolish and ignorant, but Christ hath infinite wisdom to teach and guide me; I am laden with guilt, but Christ’s sacrifice is sufficient to atone for it; I have strong lusts and corruptions, but Christ hath a kingly power to subdue them; I am under much darkness, but Christ is “the light of the world;” I am under fears and discouragements, but Christ is the consolation of Israel; I am wounded and sick, but Christ hath excellent balm for me; I am under a burden of debt, but Christ is rich, and fully able to pay it; I am in prison, and under bonds, but Christ opens prison doors, and looses them that are bound; I am fatherless by Adam’s fall, but Christ is the everlasting Father “in whom the fatherless find mercy;” 

I have many enemies to pursue and accuse me, as law, justice, Satan, and conscience; but Christ, my advocate, can answer them all: therefore I flee to him for refuge, I close with him in all his offices, and put my whole confidence in him.

It gives great encouragement to my soul, that I have a Saviour so full of goodness and pity to look to, a mighty agent in heaven to plead my cause, and to present my petitions and supplications to the Father. I put all my requests and concerns in his hand, and commit them to his care and management; he knows the fittest time to present them, and to send me an answer. 

In the sacrament I swear allegiance to thee; as my sovereign Lord and King, over thy broken body, and shed blood, I engage to be a true and faithful soldier in thy army, and to take the field against thy enemies. Many pieces of furniture do I need for this warfare; I need the girdle of sincerity, the shield of faith, the helmet of hope, the sword of the Spirit, the breastplate of righteousness, and to have my feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace. But glory to thy name, my Redeemer and captain of salvation hath provided a noble armoury and store-house to answer all these my necessities and wants. Lord, supply all my needs out of thy infinite fulness, and furnish me with every thing necessary for the work and warfare thou callest me unto. Oh, my enemies are lively, and they are strong; but I look to my glorious Captain to gird me with strength for the battle, and to teach my hands to war. Ω