“Rejoice, therefore, my dear friends, that you are God’s husbandry.
The early and the latter rain, and the cheerful beams of the Sun of Righteousness, are surely promised to ripen your souls for glory;—but storms and frosts likewise are useful and seasonable in their places, though we perhaps may think we could do better without them.
In our bright and lively frames, we learn what God can do for us; in our dark and dull hours, we feel how little we can do without Him; and both are needful to perfect our experience and to establish our faith.
At one time we are enabled to rejoice in God; at another we are seeking after Him sorrowing: these different seasons are equally good in their turns, though not equally comfortable; and there is nothing we need fear but security, carelessness, and presumption.
To think ourselves rich and increased with goods, or to suppose we are safe a moment longer than while depending upon Jesus would be dangerous.
Let us pray the Lord to keep us from such a mistake; and, as to the rest, we shall do well.
Let us be faithful and diligent in the use of all appointed means, especially in secret exercises, and then leave Him to lead us as He pleaseth.
And, though our path should lie through the fire or through the water, we may trust His power and love to bring us safely through, and at last to fix us in a wealthy place, where our warfare and tears shall cease forever.”
–John Newton, The Works of John Newton, Volume 6 (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1988), 6: 64-65.