longer to stay on the path." Thats all right. Take the longer way. Shortcuts are dangerous and often longer in the end. Gods way is the only way. III.

Using Your Mind in Gods Service Like the parable of the talents, what we receive from God must be used in service to benefit others.Talents used will be talents multiplied. Any unused talents will be taken away or we will be as the Dead Sea in which nothing can survive. So it is that the law of service is the law of life. There is nothing in Gods creation that lives unto itself. Everything that God has created ministers to some other life.

Every tree, shrub and leaf gives off oxygen so that man and animal could live. The flowers give out fragrance and beauty in blessing to the world. The sun sheds its light to gladden a thousand worlds. The ocean receives the streams from every land, but it takes to give. The mists ascending from the oceans fall in showers to water the earth.The angels of glory find their joy in givinggiving love and tireless watchcare to souls that are fallen and unholy.

Heavenly beings woo the hearts of men. They bring to this dark world light from the courts above. By their gentle and patient ministry they move upon the human spirit, to bring the lost into fellowship with Christ. The greatest example of service to mankind is none other than our Lord Himself.He came from the courts of heaven to live, to serve and to die for mankind.

All things that Christ received from the Father, he gave to us. In the heavenly courts, in His ministry for all created beings, the Fathers life flows out to all through His beloved Son Jesus Christ. In our service to mankind we are actually representing the character of the great Giver, the law of life. The service we rendered in sincerity of heart to others has great rewards.

Jesus promised, "Thy Father which seeth in secret Himself shall reward thee openly." The faces of men and women who walk and work with God express the peace of heaven.They are surrounded with the atmosphere of heaven. For these souls the kingdom of God has begun. They have Christs joy, the joy of being a blessing to humanity. They have the honor of being accepted for the Masters use; they are trusted to do His work in His name.

501 Illustrations Page 99 No.137. "More Than Life" Years ago, far back in the interior of China, missionary John Gaskill was taking his seriously wife, Mary, on a long journey down the river to a hospital where she could receive medical attention. As they journeyed along in their boat, the two white-haired workers for God reminisced over their long period of service in the mission fields. Both agreed that it had been most rewarding, and neither would have changed the past even if it had been within their power. After several days journey Mary grew weaker, "John, cant we stop here under a large tree for a while?" she asked.

"Im so tired!" "Her wish was granted, and when he had made her as comfortable as possible, she looked up into his face and said, "John, I cannot go any further. I am going to die here. But I want to tell you again how very glad I am that we came to China. And she went on to talk of the transformation which God, through their ministry, had wrought in hearts and homes, and in whole villagers where they had labored. "Johns heart was too full for words, and his eyes, brimming with tears, turned to the river.Not a Chinese was in sight.

The boat crew and servants had sensed that death was near and had disappeared. He was alone with Mary. "As John bent over her, while she lay in his arms, she kissed him good-bye, drew one last whisper of a breath, and was gone... Gently he laid her on the ground, went down to the boat, took out an oar, and walked back to Mary.

"With the oar he dug her grave. He lined it with tree boughs, then returned to the boat again, took one of his wifes white skirts from their baggage, and somehow made it do for a shroud. Tenderly he lifted her in his arms and put her body down into the grave; then standing all alone, he repeated the twenty-third Psalm brokenly but to the last, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever. Afterward he prayed. "Telling a friend about the experience later, he said, It nearly killed me to push the dirt down on her with the boat oar, but I knew that it had to be done, and the good Lord gave me strength and courage.

I left her there to sleep until Jesus comes." After the lonely missionary had completed his heartbreaking task, he boarded his little craft and once more started down the river. But he called a halt when he realized their direction and said, No, men; up the river! Home to the mission station and to work for souls! Because, you see, Marys last word to him had been: John, I wish you would go back to our work and stay in China and witness for God to the end of your life, or till Jesus comes." 501 Illustration Page 251 No. 394 "No Other Plan" According to the story, as Jesus was returning to heaven, the angels asked Him how His gospel work would be carried on now that He was leaving the earth.

Jesus told them of the work that John, Peter, Mary, and others had done. "They are to continue my work," He explained."And if they fail in the work You have left for them to do, what other plan do you have?" the angels asked anxiously. "If they fail," Jesus said sadly, "I have no other plan.

" We must not fail in the work He was given us do! To grow in our Christian experience, we to commune with God through prayer. We also need to hear Him speaking to us through His Word. Every moment of every day we need to depend on the Holy Spirit. No matter how high our position, how many years we have been with the Lord, or what our title or status, we need daily private prayer and study.

We must refill our heart with the oil of the Spirit, recharge our souls with the Heavenly Power, and receive Gods strength for each new day.We cannot have victorious living unless we have daily prayer, study of Gods Word, and private devotion. Our old nature lurks in the shadows, ready to jump out at any moment of carelessness. It constantly strives to revive. Daily, hourly, we need to reaffirm our surrender to Christ and our dependence on Him. The secret of Christs greatness and His victory was prayer.

Had He not prayed as He did, He wouldnt have lived as He did."Prayer in secret, prayer while the hands are engaged in labor, prayer while walking by the way, prayer in the night season, the hearts desires ever ascending to Godthis is our only safety. If we want to be saved at last, "We must look to Christ; we must resist as He resisted; we must pray as He prayed; we must agonize as He agonized, if we would conquer as He conquered." May God help us to make this vital commitment to Him today. Amen.