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Thoughts by William Cowper

In 1772 William Cowper wrote these words:

Where is the blessedness I knew
     When first I saw the Lord? 
Where is the soul-refreshing view
     Of Jesus and his word?

He was reflecting on his aunt who had fallen seriously ill. He said that she was “the chief of blessings I have met with in my journey since the Lord was pleased to call me. … Her illness has been a sharp trial to me.” Her illness caused him to wonder whether or not he was walking closely with the Lord.   He said, “Oh, that (her illness) may have a sanctified effect, that I may rejoice to surrender up to the Lord my dearest comforts, the moment He may require them.”

As I read the words of this poem today I was challenged to ask myself if I am as close to the Lord as I once was. Is there something in this life which is drawing more affection from my heart than Christ? Is there something which is demanding more focus of my mind that the sweet glory of the Lord? Whatever that thing is, is the very thing which has become more worthy of my worship than the eternal treasure of knowing Him…indeed, than the eternal treasure of Him! Cowper’s third stanza struck me as the most challenging:

The dearest idol I have known,
     Whate’er that idol be, 
Help me to tear it from thy throne,
     And worship only thee.

Brothers and sister, let Jesus only be on that throne. Don’t stay far from Him but let’s walk closely with our God.