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Friday, February 21, 2014

The Heart Healed and Changed by Mercy


William Cowper was an English poet, who along with John Newton (the author of Amazing Grace), wrote a work called the Olney Hymns between 1763 and 1775. In the summer of 2012, I discovered in Cowper's English garden a tiny buidling where he would escape to write. This tiny spot in this English setting inspires me. The picture of this small structure is shown as the cover picture for my devotional page. Within its small space, Cowper found inspiration. “The Heart Healed and Changed by Mercy” is one of his poems in the Olney Hymns.

Sin enslaved me many years,
And led me bound and blind;
Till at length a thousand fears
Came swarming o'er my mind.
"Where," said I, in deep distress,
"Will these sinful pleasures end?
How shall I secure my peace
And make the Lord my friend?"
Friends and ministers said much
The gospel to enforce;
But my blindness still was such,
I chose a legal course:
Much I fasted, watch'd, and strove,
Scarce would shew my face abroad,
Fear'd almost to speak or move,
A stranger still to God.
Thus afraid to trust His grace,
Long time did I rebel;
Till despairing of my case,
Down at His feet I fell:
Then my stubborn heart He broke,
And subdued me to His sway;
By a simple word He spoke,
"Thy sins are done away."

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