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Afflictions Sanctified By the Word

Oh how I love Thy holy Word,
Thy gracious covenant, O Lord!
It guides me in the peaceful way;
I think upon it all the day.

What are the mines of shining wealth,
The strength of youth, the bloom of health!
hat are all joys compared with those,
Thine everlasting Word bestows!

Long unafflicted, undismay’d,
In pleasure’s path secure I stray’d;
Thou mad’st me feel thy chast’ning rod,
And straight I turn’d unto my God.

What though it pierced my fainting heart,
I bless’d Thine hand that caused the smart:
It taught my tears awhile to flow,
But saved me from eternal woe.

Oh! hadst Thou left me unchastised,
Thy precepts I had still despised;
And still the snare in secret laid
Had my unwary feet betray’d.

I love thee, therefore, O my God,
And breathe towards Thy dear abode;
Where, in Thy presence fully blest,
Thy chosen saints for ever rest.

Olney Hymns, William Cowper, from Cowper’s Poems, Sheldon & Company, New York