The Cream of Christianity

 •  2 min. read  •  grade level: 8
H. P. Barker
We were standing, my friend and I, in the garden of a north country farm-house, beneath the hospitable roof of which we were making a short stay. Before us lay a wide prospect, with the lofty Cheviots towering in the distance, and many a farm and cottage dotting the intervening landscape.
Some years ago, said my friend, there came a man in this country-side who was greatly used of God. Uncouth, and in some ways unattractive, he seemed to have a wonderful power with him, and many were brought from darkness to light through his preaching.
One day he was walking along the road yonder, when he met an old peddler, evidently an Irishman, selling his wares from door to door.
Hoping to find an opportunity of saying a few words to the old man about his soul, he accosted him, and after a few introductory remarks, observed that “it is a grand thing to be saved.”
“Eh?” said the old peddler, “I know something better than that!”
“Better than being saved?” said the servant of God, “what can you possibly know better than that?”
“Ah,” said the Irishman, “I know.”
“Well, tell me,” said the other, “what is there better than salvation?”
“The companionship of the Man who has saved me,” was the peddler’s unexpected and astonishing reply.
He was evidently no novice in the school of Christ. He had learned a lesson well worth learning. He knew, not only the blessedness of God’s salvation, but the joy that flows from having the company of the One who saves.
How much does the Christian reader of these lines know of this? Salvation through Christ is one thing: the companionship of Christ is quite another.
Many live, and die, and go to heaven without tasting the joy, of this. Saved they are, of course, because they have staked their confidence in the Savior and in His atoning sacrifice. But the cream of Christianity is not the assurance of salvation, but the joy of companionship. Those who miss it are but “skim-milk” Christians — that is, content with a great deal less than their own full and proper portion by grace.
May ours be that blessed companionship which Paul desired for his son in the faith, Timothy: “The Lord Jesus Christ be with thy spirit.”