Thou Framer of the light and dark,
Steer through the tempest Thine own ark:
Amid the howling wintry sea
We are in port if we have Thee.
The Rulers of this Christian land,
’Twixt Thee and us ordained to stand, —
Guide Thou their course, O Lord, aright,
Let all do all as in Thy sight.
Oh! by Thine own sad burthen, borne
So meekly up the hill of scorn,
Teach Thou Thy Priests their daily cross
To bear as Thine, nor count it loss!
If some poor wandering child of Thine
Have spurned to-day the voice divine,
Now, Lord, the gracious work begin;
Let him no more lie down in sin.
Watch by the sick: enrich the poor
With blessings from Thy boundless store:
Be every mourner’s sleep to-night,
Like infants’ slumbers, pure and light.
Come near and bless us when we wake,
Ere through the world our way we take;
Till in the ocean of Thy love
We lose ourselves, in Heaven above.
Now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.—Romans xiii 11.
Awake—again the Gospel-trump is blown —
From year to year it swells with louder tone,
From year to year the signs of wrath
Are gathering round the Judge’s path,
Strange words fulfilled, and mighty works achieved,
And truth in all the world both hated and believed.
Awake! why linger in the gorgeous town,
Sworn liegemen of the Cross and thorny crown?
Up from your beds of sloth for shame,
Speed to the eastern mount like flame,
Nor wonder, should ye find your King in tears,
E’en with the loud Hosanna ringing in His ears.
Alas! no need to rouse them: long ago
They are gone forth to swell Messiah’s show:
With glittering robes and garlands sweet
They strew the ground beneath His feet:
All but your hearts are there—O doomed to prove
The arrows winged in Heaven for Faith that will not love!
Meanwhile He passes through th’ adoring crowd,
Calm as the march of some majestic cloud,
That o’er wild scenes of ocean-war
Holds its still course in Heaven afar:
E’en so, heart-searching Lord, as years roll on,
Thou keepest silent watch from Thy triumphal throne:
E’en so, the world is thronging round to gaze
On the dread vision of the latter days,
Constrained to own Thee, but in heart
Prepared to take Barabbas’ part:
“Hosanna” now, to-morrow “Crucify,”
The changeful burden still of their rude lawless cry.
Yet in that throng of selfish hearts untrue
Thy sad eye rests upon Thy faithful few,
Children and childlike souls are there,
Blind Bartimeus’ humble prayer,
And Lazarus wakened from his four days’ sleep,
Enduring life again, that Passover to keep.