Of Caesar's Household
(Taken from The High Calling, Meditations on Philippians by J.H. Jowett, 1909, Fleming H. Revell Company)
All the saints salute you, especially they that are of Caesar's household" (Phil. 4:22)
"That is a very wonderful thing that the general river of Christian courtesy should be flowing from the hard precincts of imperial lust and tyranny... Here is a clean, clear river streaming out of the very centre of a poisonous swamp. Here is a sweet spring lifting its healthful waters in the bitter waste. Here is a white lily spreading its radiant purity above a very noisome bed. This is the kind of miracle to arrest and startle the world. Goodness in unexpected places!
...A commissioner of one of our great London dailies has recently been exploring some of the awful howling wastes of London's slums. He went into one court, and up one terrible flight of stairs, where gin and sweat and swearing and putridity were horribly commingled, and in the very thick of it all he heard a woman's sweet, clear, triumphant voice singing, "We thank Thee, O our Father, for all things bright and good." Yes, and the commissioner discovered that she was a saint indeed. But how adverse the environment. Where did the lovely fern find even the requisite pinch of friendly earth? God knows, and he provided it. It seems as though God's plants can laugh at circumstances, that they can sink strange roots right through their immediate setting, and reach such marvelous resources that their inhospitable environment counts for nothing."