Wednesday, April 30, 2014

nearer to thee

Nearer, my God, to thee, nearer to thee!
 E'en though it be a cross that raiseth me,
still all my song shall be,
nearer, my God, to thee;
nearer, my God, to thee, nearer to thee!
(Nearer my God to thee, TLH 533)

Please tell me if anyone out there is able to truly sing this song without squirming?  Is there really someone who can consider the horrors of "cross," look God in the eye, and say, "Yes Lord, bring it on!  If it means it will make me closer to You, by all means, strip me down, destroy my comfort, bring on the suffering!"

I do not say this to criticise the hymn.  It is a beautiful hymn, and expresses a wonderful and holy sentiment.  I just wish that sentiment really took up my entire heart, and not only a tiny little part.  That part sings, and the rest puts on a phony little show, and I see how far I fail to keep the first commandment.  So often my prayers are basically:
Uh oh, that cross is coming close to me...  not that one Lord!  I'm good, thanks.  No cross today. Just comfort.  And joy.  And peace.  And blessing.

It is grace, again, that God shows to me, by not waiting until my heart is ready before He sends the next trial that will bring me closer to Him.

But please, God... just five more minutes?

originally published 4/17/11


  1. That reminds me of the times I've been on the verge of saying, "Lord, give me patience," and then think, "Hold on a minute, tribulation worketh patience," and I just hold my tongue about asking. I think I'm getting some without asking for more. *sigh*

    1. Yeah, he knows what we need before we ask it... not always a comforting thought , is it?!

  2. I laughed reading this. That is totally my attitude toward trials also! I want miraculous growth in an instant instead of things that stretch my faith. When I come to the other side of a trial though, I usually look back and think how majorly patient and kind God was with me as I was SLOW to trust that He had it all in hand all along.

    1. yes, instant growth sure would be nice! :) So glad our gardener is trustworthy!

  3. Are you familiar with this hymn', In the Cross? This post reminded me of that hymn. It is easy when the cross is light. It is easy to want to run from the trembling, heavy laden cross despite the truth we know that it's not "us" who really carries it, right? I struggle daily bearing that cross He bears with me. Lovely words to think about here my friend.


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