"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it...
He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God."
His Wounds, Our Cure
The Prince of Darkness, flushed with vict'ry
In our first parents' first apostasy,
Usurped a lawless sovereignty on man,
Revolted thus from his first Sovereign.
And though by that apostasy he found,
Under the chains of death, his vassal bound,
Yet to secure his empire, he overspread
The world with darkness, and thereby did lead
His captives as he please. Thus he bears
His rule usurped near four thousand years;
Except some small confined plantation,
within a family or nation.
But now to put a period to this reign
Of this usurper, and reduce again
Man to his just subjection, 'tis decreed
That man from this subjection shall be freed.
And this not by the absolute command
Of an immediate pow'r, nor shall the bands
Of angels, glorious hosts, engaged be
To rescue man from this captivity.
But God an unsuspected means intends,
And yet most suitable unto this end.
Sin stained our nature, and the serpent's wile
Did man of innocence and life beguile;
By man his head is crushed; the lawful Lord
Unto His creature man to his life restored;
A virgin's Son is born; this rising sun
The world's enthralling darkness overruns.
A Child to us is born, whose innocence
Our nature's spot and stain doth purge and cleanse;
His wounds, our cure; His bonds, our liberty;
His death becomes our life, our victory.
"But made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord."
The Puritans have been poorly portrayed as stern, legalistic, and in general an over bearing group. But in reality a more God honoring people there never was. The poetry that came from them is amazing! I was lent this book for some research and found it to be treasure trove!
Here is a couple of poems that show how fully they trusted in God as their Lord and Master. I hope these poems inspire you to look more fully to God as the merciful, gracious Saviour that He is.
Election - Sovereign and Free
Behold the potter and the clay,
He forms His vessels as He please;
Such is our God, and such are we,
The subjects of His high decrees.
Doth not the workman's power extend
Over all the mass, which part to choose
And mold it for a nobler end,
And which to leave for viler use?
May not the sovereign Lord on high
Dispense His favors as He will,
choose some to life, while others die,
And yet be just and gracious still?
What if , to make His terror known,
He lets His patience long endure,
Suff'ring vile rebels to go on,
And seal their own destruction sure?
What if He means to show His grace,
And His electing love employs
To mark out some of mortal race,
And form them fit for heav'nly joys?
Shall man rely against the Lord,
And call his Maker's ways unjust,
The thunder of whose dreadful word
Can crush a thousand worlds to dust?
But, O my soul, if truths so bright
Should dazzle and confound thy sight,
Yet still His written will obey,
And wait the great decisive day.
Then shall He make His justice known,
And the whole world before His throne
With joy or terror shall confess
The glory of His righteousness.
From The Psalms and Hymns of Isaac Watts
The Glorious Gospel of the Blessed God
What wisdom, majesty, and grace,
Through all the gospel shine!
'Tis God that speaks, and we confess
The doctrine most divine.
Down from His starry throne on high,
The almighty Savior comes;
Lays His bright robes of glory by,
And feeble flesh assumes.
The mighty debt that sinners owed,
Upon the cross He pays;
Then through the clouds ascends to God,
'Mid shouts of loftiest praise.
There He, our great High Priest, appears
Before His Father's throne;
Mingles His merits with our tears,
And pours salvation down.
Great God, with reverence we adore
Thy justice and Thy grace;
And on Thy faithfulness and pow'r
Our firm dependence place.
From The Works of Samuel Stennett, D.D.
Our beloved pet Patches died early this morning at the ripe old age of 13. She was my brother's first dog and my dad's little girl.
We got her when she was almost a year old back in 1996. She was very energetic and always talking!
Here are some pictures of Patches through out her life with us...
Our first year with her...
Our first hike...
Her favorite game was holding a stick or even more impressive a tennis ball in her paws while laying on her back. Then with an expert aim she would drop it right into her mouth.
She was a wonderful dog and we're all going to miss her.
One of our Silver Lace Wyandottes just laid her very first egg! Hopefully the rest will follow her lead and start laying. This is our first time owning chickens so finding your first egg is REALLY exciting! I guess the first eggs are always small so at first mom didn't even see the egg. Hopefully, they will start producing larger eggs soon! 'Tis a brave chicken that will lay in only 18 degree weather! I hope to post more on our chicken project soon!