Press Onward!

Wednesday, September 15, 2021
Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Follow Me The Master Said"1 (Lyrics)

Tickly feelings on my fingers awakened me from my snooze in the recliner. I opened my eyes to see beady eyes glaring up at me. It was a wee mouse scampering onto my hand.

In reflecting back, I'm less amazed by the little creature's audacity than by my placid reaction. I didn't freak out — or even flinch. Why not? It was the result of conditioning. The mouse's appearance was not a surprise. I had seen it that morning in the bedroom. After a brief chase, it had disappeared. Thus, the mouse's presence was fresh in my mind. Furthermore, last year, I had trained a chipmunk to walk up my leg and into my hand. This conditioned me to the sensation of little paws on my limbs.

I pause with questions for you: What are your present thoughts? Are you still processing my opening words? Are you still freaking out over this? I nudge you to press ahead with me. For now, we must think about God, Who keeps pressing us beyond such little episodes — as these words reveal:

Romans 5:3-4 – We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. (NLT)

Yes. Even unwelcome rodents can nudge us onward, building our endurance so that we won't freak out or lose heart in future trials. Thus, formerly fretful ordeals become familiar, and easier to handle. It is said, "Do the thing you fear, and death of fear is certain." Frankly, I'd rather trust God, not myself, to arrange "the thing you fear". After all, that's Jesus' job as "the author and finisher of our faith". (Hebrews 12:2 KJV)

God didn't ordain the mouse event to be sensational clickbait for conversations. No. I must do what the mouse did: keep running past the traps! Press onward! Earlier that day, I was getting obsessed over a demeaning occurrence. The disturbing memory was becoming dangerous clickbait in my mind. Thankfully, God pushed me forward with better thoughts to ponder: the following words by the preacher, Charles Spurgeon.

    To be laughed at is no great hardship to me… . Caricatures, lampoons, and slanders … in these I will rejoice. But that you [listeners] should turn from your own mercy, this is my sorrow. Spit on me, but oh, repent! Laugh at me: but oh, believe in my Master! Make my body as the dirt of the streets if you will: but damn not your own souls! Oh! Do not despise your own mercies. Put not away from you the gospel of Christ.

    It is not the preaching, but the sighing over your souls that is the hard work … . 'Tis the after-thought that will follow me when I descend these pulpit steps, that many of you, my hearers, will neglect this warning. You will go; you will walk into the street; you will joke … laugh … . (from "Paul's Sermon before Felix")

Indisputably such heartfelt utterances took shape through the conditioning benefit of "pesty" troubles. Spurgeon is an example of one who kept pressing onward in faith, hope, and love. Let us follow his example.

Prayer: Lord, whatever the means, free us from entrapping thoughts and memories. Replace them with thoughts that help us to press onward in faith, hope, and love. Amen.

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About the author:

Diane Eaton <>
Paisley, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:



    Thanks for the good word, Diane.

    Wow! Impressive. Thank you for that.

    Thank you! I needed this this morning.

    Well-written and timely message Diane.
    Very helpful, thank you.

    Thank you for sharing this encouraging devotional with us. Blessings.

    Thank you, Diane, this was a good one and hits home.
    God bless.


    Thanks for this eye-opener, Diane. Memorable. Blessings on the little ones who scurry and blessings on you for the sharing.

    Thanks Diane, for today’s devotion.
    It’s a beautiful lesson.
    I like your submissions, thank you.

    Hello Diane. Thank you once again for you inspiring words, and your last paragraph before the prayer was what really blessed me. May the Lord continue to give you the good words to share with us.

    Dear Dianne Eaton:
    So many times, I have benefitted from your inspiring and challenging messages. Thank you, and may God bless you, for persevering as Spurgeon and our Savior, urges us to do.

    Good Morning, Diane!
    Your prayer today is beautiful, and so meaningful. It is one that I not only need to say each night as I try to calm my mind for sleep, but also each morning as I face the new day.
    Thank you!

    Wow! Exactly what I’ve been struggling and praying about today – a righteous, ‘meek’, respectful, forgiving, and merciful response to … things that were said, other people’s’ responses to the COVID virus, and all the fear that is spreading, not only of the virus but of our government. May the Lord guide us into the future. Thank you, Diane.

    Thank you, Diane!
    It was good to see your name. We were blessed with your music a few years ago in Lucknow.
    As we are blessed with your writing today!
    You must have excellent control of your reactions though – a mouse on your hand? I am sure my reaction would be to jump very high!
    Hope you have a very blessed day. (Psalm 62: 5,6)

    Thank you for writing again, Diane. Your story reminds me of something that happened at our ranch house where we live. We had company this summer, long and dear friends. One morning at breakfast our male friend said something He tends to mumble his words and his wife said, “I thought you weren’t going to tell them.” It seems that a mouse was in her bed the previous night. Well, there are mice everywhere on the ranch; but we have never had one appear in the bed… especially of a guest!
    Next time that happens (hopefully not) I will refer to your devotional!
    Don’t know about “your” mice, but ours look like the ones in the Disney movies of old.

    Good morning, Diane,
    Thank you so much for these words from Spurgeon. I am always blessed by reading Spurgeon’s sermons. I am blessed by your devotionals also.

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