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Ecclesiastes 12:1-7

The Four Calls

The Spirit came in childhood and pleaded, “Let me in,”
But oh! the door was bolted by thoughtlessness and sin;
“I am too young,” the child replied, “I will not yield today;
There’s time enough tomorrow.” The Spirit went away.

Again He came and pleaded in youth’s bright happy hour;
He came but heard no answer, for lured by Satan’s power
The youth lay dreaming then and saying, “Not today,
Not till I’ve tried earth’s pleasures.” The Spirit went away.

Again He called in mercy in manhood’s vigorous prime,
But still He found no welcome, the merchant had no time;
No time for true repentance, no time to think or pray,
And so, repulsed and saddened, the Spirit went away.

Once more He called and waited, the man was old and ill,
And scarcely heard the whisper, his heart was cold and still;
“Go leave me; when I need thee, I’ll call for thee,” he cried;
Then sinking on his pillow, without a hope, he died!

Our Daily Bread, February 22