luni, 22 octombrie 2018

Instead of this, he made me feel 
/ The hidden evils of my heart, 

Prayer Answered by Crosses 

By John Newton

I asked the Lord that I might grow
In faith and love and every grace,

Might more of his salvation know,

And seek more earnestly his face.

’Twas he who taught me thus to pray;
And he, I trust, has answered prayer;

But it has been in such a way

As almost drove me to despair.

I hoped that, in some favoured hour,
At once he’d answer my request,

And by his love’s constraining power

Subdue my sins, and give me rest.

Instead of this, he made me feel
The hidden evils of my heart,

And let the angry powers of hell

Assault my soul in every part.

Yea, more, with his own hand he seemed
Intent to aggravate my woe,

Crossed all the fair designs I schemed,

Blasted my gourds, and laid me low.

Lord, why is this? I trembling cried;
Wilt thou pursue this worm to death?

This is the way, the Lord replied
I answer prayer for grace and faith.

These inward trials I now employ
From self and pride to set thee free,
And break thy schemes of earthly joy,

That thou may’st seek thy all in me.

This hymn was written as a testament to a difficult time in John Newton's life. He and his friend William Cowper had embarked on a project that was to become the Olney Hymns Collection, but not long into the project, Cowper went insane. Newton wrote that it seemed as though God was going out of his way to make life difficult for him, then realized that even through adversity, God continues to work.

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