Wednesday, June 9, 2010

doe the nexte thynge

I recently finished reading the book, Secure in the Everlasting Arms by Elisabeth Elliot. A recurring thought which Elisabeth posed, and which continues to challenge me was a simple little phrase,
"Doe the nexte thynge." (Translated meaning, "Do the next thing."
Pretty good for someone who has no training in linguistics, eh?)

Elisabeth writes, "There is an active practice of holiness as we carry out, for the glory of God, the ordinary duties of each day, faithfully fulfilling the responsibilities given us."
The challenge is to live each day asking God what the "nexte thynge" is, and then willingly seeking to obey Him in doing that very thing.
The phrase keeps running through my head, and I decided to google it to look for its source. I came up with the following poem, and thought that you might also be blessed by the olde world, yet very relevant encouragement.

From an old English parsonage down by the sea
There came in the twilight a message to me;
It’s quaint Saxon legend, deeply engraven,

Hath, it seems to me, teaching from heaven.

And on through the hours the quiet words ring

Like a low inspiration: “DOE THE NEXTE THYNGE.”
Many a questioning, many a fear,
Many a doubt, hath its quieting here.
Moment by moment, let down from Heaven,
Time, opportunity, guidance, are given.
Fear not tomorrows, child of the King,
Trust them with Jesus, doe the nexte thynge.
Do it immediately, do it with prayer;
Do it reliantly, casting all care;
Do it with reverence, tracing His hand
Who placed it before thee with earnest command.
Stayed on Omnipotence, safe ‘neath His wing,
Leave all resulting, doe the nexte thynge.
Looking to Jesus, ever serener,
Working or suffering, be thy demeanor;
In His dear presence, the rest of His calm,
The light of His countenance be thy psalm,
Strong in His faithfulness, praise and sing.
Then, as He beckons thee, doe the nexte thynge.


Heritage Clan said...

Thank you for this encouragement!

Anonymous said...

Elisabeth Elliot is such a godly example. I have really enjoyed reading your blog. ~Candace

us5 said...

thanks, Candace! yes, Elisabeth's writings never fail to encourage me, and to point me to Christ!

Carl G. said...

Ah, the quotidian mysteries! Hey, now I know where Nike got their byline "Just do it!"

us5 said...

i had to look that word up in my dictionary, Carl. "quotidian" is generally used to convey a sense of the mundane; that is, there is an implication of the 'commonplace'

thanks for the new word! i can just see those nike ceos spending their free hours reading Elisabeth Elliot's books...! ;o)

The Girls said...

This is one of my most favorite quotes in the world and Elisabeth Elliot is one of my most favorite authors! What a wonderful thing to remember when you don't know what to do...Just do the next thing! Thanks for sharing the poem. I've seen it in Elisabeth's books or newsletter before, but it's good to read again.

us5 said...

so! that your secret to accomplishing so much, Miranda?!?? ;o)