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Take off the shoes from your feet!

(James W. Alexander, "Consolation" 1852)

The perfections and attributes of God afford
a refuge--and in time of trouble, faith resorts to
this refuge.

If God were ignorant or unwise, we might suffer
without His knowledge, or sink in waters which He
could not explore. We might be lost in mazes where
His eye could not follow us, or be carried away in
whirlwinds which He knew not how to quell.

If God were limited in power, we might groan under
the very burden which He could not lift off.

If God were afar off, in some pavilion beyond our solar
system, He could not be reached by our cry of anguish
when the deep waters went over our soul. And were
He not here this moment, it would be mockery to pray.

If God were not good, our happiness would be nothing
to Him, and we might have hellish pain forever and ever.

If God were not merciful, He would not care how
wretched we are.

If God were not gracious, we would sink in despair,
being sinners.

But because God is . . .
  everywhere present,
  everlasting, and
  unchangeable in goodness, mercy and compassion;
we have in Him a refuge and stronghold, to which we
may continually resort. Raise your eyes towards the
loftiness of our stronghold. But take off the shoes
from your feet
--for the place is holy ground!

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