The Compasses – Thomas Manton

“As in a pair of compasses, one part is fixed in the centre, whilst the other foot wandereth about in the circumference, so whatever subjects we may think upon, the soul must stay on Christ, and be fixed on him.”

While we search after evidences and additional comforts we must not leave our simple trust in Jesus. Whatever sweep our knowledge may take as we advance in years, we must retain most fixedly the one and only centre which is worthy of a regenerated soul, namely, our Lord Jesus. If the circle of our energies should encompass all the world, still must the heart stay with delightful continuance with the Well-Beloved. Immovable and steadfast must we be, our willing soul unswervingly loyal to its sole object of trust and love, the one and only Lord of our whole being, the chief among ten thousand, the altogether lovely.

To whom else can we go? Where else is there rest for us? let us then abide in Christ Jesus. Fix the centre with the whole force of a resolute heart, nay, more, with the whole power of divine grace. Never tolerate the idea of novelty in this matter. Here there can be advance; we are in him rooted and grounded. Only so can we strike out the true circle of life: without a fixed centre the sphere can never be true.

O thou who art the same yesterday, today, and forever, hold me fast forever, and bid me sing, “O God, my heart is fixed, my heart is fixed!”

Thomas Manton