Sunday, May 17, 2015

Cowper: I thirst, but not as once I did

Sunday, May 17, 2015
    [Jesus:] “Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him.” By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified.
    —John 7:38-39 (NIV)
I thirst, but not as once I did,
The vain delights of earth to share;
Thy wounds, Emmanuel, all forbid
That I should seek my pleasures there.

It was the sight of thy dear cross
First wean’d my soul from earthly things;
And taught me to esteem as dross
The mirth of fools and pomp of kings.

I want that grace that springs from thee,
That quickens all things where it flows,
And makes a wretched thorn like me
Bloom as the myrtle or the rose.

Dear fountain of delight unknown!
No longer sink below the brim;
But overflow and pour me down
A living and life-giving stream!

For sure, of all the plants that share
The notice of thy Father’s eye,
None proves less grateful to his care,
Or yields him meaner fruit than I.
    ... William Cowper (1731-1800), The Works of William Cowper: his life, letters, and poems, New York: R. Carter & Brothers, 1851, p. 682 (see the book)
    See also John 7:38-39; Ps. 46:4; Eccl. 2:1; Isa. 5:14; John 4:12-14; 6:27; Rom. 5:20-21; 2 Cor. 1:21-22
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, You remind me of my smallness.

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