When I was roughly 12 and ready to join the church, the pastor gave me his private Talk (which I don’t remember), but also a small devotional book put together by Robert Speer that I still drink deeply from. I don’t think I was terribly impressed at the time but now consider it a treasure—spinach for the soul. The format is simple: a theme banner at the top, three or four Bible verses that fit, a poem or reading on the subject, and finally a wonderfully crafted prayer. Deep stuff. It spoke to me even then, but like the Bible, I keep finding more and more nutrients.
Page 78: “OUR HUMAN VALUES IN REVERSE.” One scripture passage, 1 Corinthians 1:27-29, stands out:
“But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him.”
Below that come excerpts from Major-General “Chinese” Gordon’s letters to his sister. Gordon was killed in Sudan (1885) in a situation quite like the Benghazi incident—help was two days too late in coming.
He says to his sister,
“Nothing is trivial that is unseen; it is only the material things of life that are of no import.
“Every one is doing work quite as important as any one else, whether on a sick bed or as viceroy of India; it is our folly which makes us think otherwise.”
And the prayer: “Father . . . we come this day conscious of our weakness, that You may make us strong; aware of our ignorance, that You may make us wise. Free us from all error of false proportion in our judgments, from any contempt for that which seems small and any deference to that which appears great. . . . Help us to be still and know that You are God.” [Edited]
Please chew on this spiritual spinach. It may strengthen the only muscles that really matter.

Major-General “Chinese” Gordon