Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. Isaiah 55:7, 8.
It is your thought that your mistakes and transgressions have been so grievous that the Lord will not have respect unto your prayers, and will bless and save you…. The closer you come to Jesus, the more faulty you will appear in your own eyes; for your vision will be clearer, and your imperfections will be seen in broad and distinct contrast to His perfect nature. But do not be discouraged. This is evidence that Satan’s delusions have lost their power; that the vivifying influence of the Spirit of God is arousing you, and your indifference and unconcern are passing away.
No deep-seated love for Jesus can dwell in the heart that does not see and realize its own sinfulness. The soul that is transformed by grace will admire His divine character; but if we do not see our own moral deformity, it is unmistakable evidence that we have not had a view of the beauty and excellence of Christ. The less we see to esteem in ourselves, the more we shall see to esteem in the infinite purity and loveliness of our Saviour. A view of our own sinfulness drives us to Him who can pardon….
God does not deal with us as finite men deal with one another. His thoughts are thoughts of mercy, love, and tenderest compassion. “He will abundantly pardon.” He says, “I have blotted out, as a thick cloud, thy transgressions.” …
Look up, you who are tried, tempted, and discouraged, look up…. It is ever safe to look up; it is fatal to look down. If you look down, the earth reels and sways beneath you; nothing is sure. But heaven above you is calm and steady, and there is divine aid for every climber. The hand of the Infinite is reaching over the battlements of heaven to grasp yours in its strong embrace. The mighty Helper is nigh to bless, lift up, and encourage the most erring, the most sinful, if they will look to Him by faith. But the sinner must look up.41The Review and Herald, February 17, 1885.