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Hark! the birds, with artless lays.
Warble their Creator's praise!
Where, in winter, all was snow,
Now the flowers in clusters grow,
And the corn, in green array,
Promises a harvest-day.
What a change has taken place!
Emblem of the spring of grace;
How the soul, in winter, mourns
Till the Lord, the Sun, returns ;
Till the Spirit's gentle rain
Bids the heart revive again;
Then the stone is turned to flesh,
And each grace springs forth afresh.
Lord, afford a spring to me!
Let me feel like what I see :
Ah! my winter has been long,
Chill'd my hopes, and stopp'd my song!
Winter threaten'd to destroy
Faith and love, and every joy;
If thy life was in the root,
Still I could not yield the fruit.
Speak, and by thy gracious voice
Make my drooping soul rejoice;
O beloved Saviour, haste,
Tell me all the storms are past!
On thy garden deign to smile,
Raise the plants, enrich the soil;
Soon thy presence will restore
Life to what seem'd dead before.
Lord, I long to be at home,
Where these changes never come;
Where the saints no winter fear,
Where 'tis spring throughout the year:
How unlike this state below!
There the flowers unwith'ring blow;
There no chilling blasts annoy;
All is love, and bloom, and joy.
THOUGH the morn may be serene,
And not a threat'ning cloud be seen,
Who can undertake to say
'Twill be pleasant all the day?
Tempests suddenly may rise,
Darkness overspread the skies,
Lightnings flash, and thunders roar,
Ere a short-liv'd day be o'er.
Often thus the child of grace
Enters on his Christian race;
Guilt and fear are overborne,
'Tis with him a summer's morn :
While his new-felt joys abound,
All things seem to smile around;
And he hopes it will be fair,
All the day, and all the year.
Should we warn him of a change
He would think the caution strange;
He no change or trouble fears,
Till the gath'ring storm appears;
Till dark clouds his sun conceal,
Till temptation's power he feel;
Then he trembles and looks pale,
All his hopes and courage fail.
But the wonder-working Lord
Sooths the tempest by his word;
Stills the thunder, stops the rain,
And his sun breaks forth again.
Soon the cloud again returns,
Now he joys, and now he mourns ;
Oft his sky is overcast,
Ere the day of life be past.
Tried believers too can say,
In the course of one short day,
Though the morning has been fair,
Prov'd a golden hour of prayer,
Sin and Satan, long ere night,
Have their comforts put to flight:
Ah what heart-felt peace and joy
Unexpected storms destroy!
Dearest Saviour, call us soon
To thy high eternal noon;
Never there shall tempest rise,
To conceal Thee from our eyes:
Satan shall no more deceive,
We no more Thy spirit grieve;
But, through cloudless endless days,
Sound, to golden harps, thy praise.
I quit the world's fantastic joys,
Her honours are but idle toys,
Her bliss an empty shade;
Like meteors in the midnight sky,
That glitter for a while, and die,
Her glories flash, and fade.
Let fools for riches strive and toil,
Let greedy minds divide the spoil,
'Tis all too mean for me;
Above the earth, above the skies,
My bold aspiring wishes rise,
My God, to heaven, and thee!
O source of glory, life, and love!
When to thy courts I mount above,
On contemplation's wings,
I look with pity and disdain
On all the pleasures of the vain,
On all the pomp of kings.
Thy beauties, rising in my sight,
Divinely sweet, divinely bright,
With raptures fill my breast:
Though robb'd of all my worldly store,
With thee I never can be poor,
But must be ever blest.
MORTALS, awake, with angels join,
And chant the solemn lay;
Love, joy, and gratitude combine
To hail the auspicious day.
In heaven the rapt'rous song began,
And sweet seraphic fire
Through all the shining legions ran
And swept the sounding lyre.
The theme, the song, the joy was new,
To each angelic tongue,
Swift through the realms of light it flew,
And loud the echo rung.
Down through the portals of the sky
The pealing anthem ran,
And angels flew, with eager joy
To bear the news to man.
Hark! the cherubic armies shout,
And glory leads the song:
Peace and salvation swell the note
Of all the heavenly throng.
With joy the chorus we'll repeat,
"Glory to God on high;
"Good will and peace are now complete,
"Jesus was born to die."
Hail! Prince of Life, for ever hail,
Redeemer, Brother, Friend!
Tho' earth, and time and life should fail,
Thy praise shall never end.
THE LORD GRANT UNTO HIM, THAT HE MAY FIND MERCY OF THE LORD IN THAT DAY."
Soon will that solemn hour appear,
When I shall hear the sound
Of the last trump; then where, Oh! where
Shalt thou, my soul be found?
"That day," that vast important Day!
Will fix thy final doom;
And call to life this moulder'd clay,
From the dark silent tomb.
This body rais'd shall there possess,
A form as yet unknown:
There ev'ry tongue must then confess,
That Christ is Lord alone.