Friday, April 20, 2007

Behold I am vile!

I wasn't able to get out much this week to take any pictures for the crews out working, Lord willing next week. But it was a good week. Both platforms for the quanset huts were completed and the quanset huts put up, air conditioners were fixed and hooked up, dirt was made ready for concrete to be poured, and flowers and plants were planted at peoples homes.

I have been really enjoying reading from the Onley hymns by John Newton and William Cowper this week and continue to stand in awe of God, who saved me and still loves and forgives me even though I sin against him.

Behold I am Vile
John Newton

O LORD, how vile am I,
Unholy, and unclean!
How can I dare to venture nigh
With such a load of sin?

Is this polluted heart
A dwelling fit for thee?
Swarming, alas! I in every part,
What evils do I see!

If I attempt to pray,
And lisp thy holy name;
My thoughts are hurried soon away,
I know not where I am.

If in thy word I look,
Such darkness fills my mind,
I only read a sealed book,
But no relief can find.

Thy gospel oft I hear,
But hear it still in vain;
Without desire, or love, or fear,
I like a stone remain.

Myself can hardly bear
This wretched heart of mine;
How hateful then must it appear
To those pure eyes of thine?

And must I then indeed
Sink in despair and die?
Fain would I hope that thou didst bleed
For such a wretch as I.

That blood which thou hast spilt;
That grace which is thine own;
Can cleanse the vilest sinner’s guilt,
And soften hearts of stone.

Low at thy feet I bow,
O pity and forgive;
Here will I lie and wait, till thou
Shalt bid me rise and live.


interdudez said...

This is a rare and wonderful poem by John Newton. I've sent it to many others:

The Kite

My waking dreams are best concealed,
Much folly, little good, they yield;
But now and then, I gain, when sleeping,
A friendly hint that’s worth the keeping.
Lately I dreamt of one who cried,
“Beware of self, beware of pride;
When you are prone to build a Babel,
Recall to mind this little fable”.

Once on a time a paper kite
Was mounted to a wondrous height,
Where, giddy with its elevation,
It thus expressed self admiration:
“See how yon crowds of gazing people
Admire my flight above the steeple:
How would they wonder if they knew
All that a kite like me can do!

“Were I but free, I’d take a flight
And pierce the clouds beyond their sight.
But ah! Like a poor prisoner bound,
My string confines me near the ground.
I’d brave the eagle’s towering wing
Might I but fly without a string.”
It tugged and pulled while thus it spoke,
To break the string-at last it broke!

Deprived at once of all its stay,
In vain it tried to soar away;
Unable its own weight to bear,
It fluttered downward through the air;
Unable its own course to guide,
The winds soon plunged it in the tide.
Ah! Foolish kite thou had’st no wing,
How could’st thou fly without a string?

My heart replied, “O Lord, I see
How much this kite resembles me!
Forgetful that by Thee I stand,
Impatient of Thy ruling hand;
How oft I’ve wished to break the lines
Thy wisdom for my lot assigns.
How oft indulged a vain desire,
For something more or something higher!

And but for grace and love divine,
A fall thus dreadful had been mine.”

-John Newton

Brett Hernan said...

Thanks to you two for posting these poems by John Newton the author of 'Amazing Grace'. I found them right when I needed to read something like them.