Sunday, March 29, 2009

Sabbath Poem- A Call to Wait

Milton always believed he possessed great powers for which God would hold him responsible. He believed he would write an immortal poem but sacrificied his eyesight during England's Civil War.

This poem is his response to that; one in which I find great comfort when I'm particularly feeling the smallness of my world and question if my "talent...lodged with me useless." Patience' answer is not one we hear often anymore in this age of self-esteem and self-acutalization: "God doth not need either [Amy's] work or [her] gifts." I will serve Him best when I "bear his mild yoke...and wait."

Milton went on to write Paradise Lost, considered by many the greatest poem in the English language, dictating to his daughter since he could no longer write.

Hoping we may find the courage today to stop all of our busyness even when the cares of the world are heavy upon us and our to-do list long, remembering that "his State is Kingly: thousands at his bidding speed...without rest." Whatever we may think is so important we must accomplish it today, our job on this Lord's Day is to find comfort and rest in Him.

Now enough of me, the poem:

On His Blindness by John Milton

WHEN I consider how my light is spent

E're half my days, in this dark world and wide,

And that one Talent which is death to hide,

Lodg'd with me useless, though my Soul more bent

To serve therewith my Maker, and present

My true account, least he returning chide,

Doth God exact day-labour, light deny'd,

I fondly ask; But Patience to prevent

That murmur, soon replies, God doth not need

Either man's work or his own gifts, who best

Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best, his State

Is Kingly. Thousands at his bidding speed

And post o're Land and Ocean without rest:

They also serve who only stand and wait.

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