“Well,” say you, “it must be something very bad if you are afraid of it, for you are not amazingly nice.” Well; I was going to say that there are times and seasons when, through the temptations of the devil, and the deceitfulness of their own hearts, the children of God turn sulky with God. “Turn sulky with God?” say you. Yes. Perhaps there has been something they have particularly desired, and thought they had prayed earnestly for, and even imagined they had some claim upon God for it; when, instead of giving it, God has sent them something directly opposite; and then they have turned sulky. Just like a child naturally sulking with his father and with his food; he will not have it, but knocks it away from him. This is keeping silence with a witness.
But, though God’s people may be in this state, they cannot be comfortable in it. Hence, says the psalmist, “When I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long.” Not his natural bones, but his spiritual bones,—his comforts, and his enjoyments; for day and night God’s hand was heavy upon him. The more he kicked the more God laid on, till at length he says, “My moisture is dried up like the drought of summer;” and he now begins to feel the wretchedness of his state. And what then? Why, he says, “I acknowledge my sin unto thee.” This was what God brought him to. Instead of saying, “If he sulks, I will too,” he brought him to confess his iniquity, as a poor guilty wretch.
William Gadsby (1773-1844) was a Strict and Particular Baptist preacher, writer and philanthropist.