“No man begins to be good till he sees himself to be bad. The young prodigal never began to mend, he never thought of returning to his father, till he came to himself, till he began to return into his own soul, and saw himself in an undone condition (Luke 15:12–22).
Ah! young men, young men: you must see yourselves to be children of wrath, to be enemies, to be strangers, to be afar off from God, from Christ, from the covenant, from heaven, to be sin’s servants, and Satan’s bond-slaves.
The ready way to be found is to see yourselves lost. The first step to mercy is to see your misery. The first step towards heaven is to see yourselves near to hell.
You won’t look after the Physician of souls, you won’t prize the Physician of souls, you won’t desire the Physician of souls, you won’t match with the Physician of souls, you won’t fall in love, in league with the Physician of souls, you won’t resign up yourselves to the Physician of souls, till you come to see your wounds, till you come to feel your diseases, till you see the tokens, the plague-sores of divine wrath and displeasure upon you.”
–Thomas Brooks, The Complete Works of Thomas Brooks, Volume 1, ed. Alexander Balloch Grosart (Edinburgh; London; Dublin: James Nichol; James Nisbet and Co.; G. Herbert, 1866), 238.