Sorrow Sanctified by John Newton Brown

johnnewtonbrownMy spirits droop with illness now, 
And yet I would submissive bow, 
My heavenly Father, to thy will; 
I would not breathe a single thought, 
With discontent or murmur fraught. 
But, suffering, own and love thee still. 

And yet there is a pensive air 
Steals o'er me ere I am aware. 
And clasps me in its soft control; 
A mildly melancholy mood, 
Of sickness born, and solitude. 
Sad and subduing to the soul. 

At times I check the starting tear. 
And think, my Father, thou art here. 
And I am thine, forever thine; 
Should blow succeed to chastening blow, 
Thou art the very same, I know. 
And future blessings dost design. 

Whence, then, this sadness that I feel? 
Why do these tears unbidden steal, 
And on my better thoughts intrude? 
Still must I weep? Then vanish, pride, 
And let these tears be sanctified 
By holy grief and gratitude. 

Breathe, Holy Spirit! on my pain, 
And I will weep o'er Jesus slain. 
His sufferings for my sins I see. 
When, in that dreary period 
Of insult, agony, and blood. 
He languished on the fatal tree. 

He was no sufferer once! As God, 
He saw me from his high abode, 
Deep sunk in sin, and wo, and shame; 
Compassion kindled with the look, 
For me a servant's form he took, 
And down to earth to save me came. 

O, it might gush an angel's tear. 
To see the Man of Sorrows dear. 
Rejected and despised by men 
For angels knew how rich before 
He was in bliss, and what he bore 
To bring me back to God again. 

Melt then, my soul! 'Twas for thy guilt 
Jesus' atoning blood was spilt; 
He could not sink in suffering lower. 
O, if thou hast one spark of love 
To Him who left his throne above, 
Go, weeping go, and sin no more. 

by John Newton Brown
October 15, 1820.

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