« PreviousContinue »
Hence all thy groans and travail pains,
Hence, till thy God return,
In wisdom's ear thy blithest strains,
FIFTH SUNDAY AFTER TRINITY.
And Simon answering said unto Him, Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless, at thy word I will let down the net : and when they had this done, they inclosed a great multitude of fishes, and their net brake. St. Luke v. 5.
THE livelong night we've toiled in vain,
"But at thy gracious word
"I will let down the net again
"Do thou thy will, O Lord!"
So day by day and week by week,
In sad and weary thought,
They muse, whom God hath set to seek
For not upon a tranquil lake
Our pleasant task we ply,
Where all along our glistening wake
Where rippling wave and dashing oar
Sweet thoughts of peace, ye may not last :
Calls us from where ye soar so fast
For wildest storms our ocean sweep :— No anchor but the Cross
Might hold and oft the thankless deep Turns all our toil to loss.
Full many a dreary anxious hour,
We watch our nets alone
In drenching spray, and driving shower, And hear the night-bird's moan:
At morn we look, and nought is there;
Who then from pining and despair
There is a stay-and we are strong;
Our Master is at hand,
To cheer our solitary song,
And guide us to the strand,
In his own time: but yet awhile
Cast after cast, by force or guile
By blameless guile or gentle force,
As when He deign'd to teach
(The lode-star of our Christian course)
Upon this sacred beach.
Should e'er thy wonder-working grace
Triumph by our weak arm,
Let not our sinful fancy trace
Aught human in the charm:
To our own nets' ne'er bow we down,
The angels, while our draught they own,
Or, if for our unworthiness
Toil, prayer, and watching fail,
So love at heart prevail.
b Habakkuk i. 16. They sacrifice unto their net, and burn incense
unto their drag.
c St. Matth. xiii. 49.
SIXTH SUNDAY AFTER TRINITY.
David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the Lord and Nathan said unto David, The Lord also hath put away thy sin: thou shalt not die. 2 Samuel xii. 23.
WHEN bitter thoughts, of conscience born,
With sinners wake at morn,
When from our restless couch we start,
With fever'd lips and wither'd heart,
Where is the spell to charm those mists away,
One stedfast thought, that God is there.
These are thy wonders, hourly wrought",
Thou Lord of time and thought,
d See Herbert's Poems, p. 160.