Aiden Wilson Tozer (April 21, 1897 – May 12, 1963) was an American Christian pastor, author, magazine editor, and spiritual mentor. Self-taught theologian. Fearless preacher. Gifted writer. Man of the inner life. A.W. Tozer, called by many a “modern-day prophet.” Observing contemporary Christian living, Tozer felt the church was on a dangerous course toward compromising with “worldly” concerns. He was a man who was obsessed with the glory and the holiness of God and making it known to others.
Of one thing we may be sure; we can never escape the external stimuli that cause vexation. The world is full of them and though we were to retreat to a cave and live the remainder of our days alone, we still could not lose them. The rough floor of our cave would chafe us, the weather would irritate us, and the very silence would cause us to fret.
Deliverance from a fretting spirit may be by blood and fire, by humility, self-abnegation and a patient carrying of the cross. There will always be “evildoers” and “workers of iniquity,” and for the most part they will appear to succeed while the forces of righteousness will seem to fail. The wicked will always have the money and the talent and the publicity and the numbers, while the righteous will be few and poor and unknown. The prayer-less Christian will surely misread the signs and fret against the circumstances. That is what the Spirit warns us against.
Let us look out calmly upon the world; or better yet, let us look down upon it from above where Christ is seated, and we are seated in Him. Though the wicked spread himself like “a green tree in its native soil” (Psalm 37:35), it is only for a moment. Soon he passes away and is not. But “the salvation of the righteous comes from the LORD; he is their stronghold in time of trouble” (verse 39). This knowledge should cure the fretting spirit.