Friday, September 6, 2013

Thy Way, Not Mine

Ever heard of Horatius Bonar? To me, it was just a name I barely recognized. I didn't know anything about the man himself. A friend of mine recently sang a song in church (I've copied it below), and I loved the words so much I had to find out who wrote it.

Came to find out the Scottish churchman and poet Horatius Bonar had a pretty trying life. After marrying his wife Jane at the age of 35, they had 5 children, all of whom died one right after the other. His sixth child, a daughter, lived, only to be widowed with 5 small children. She later moved back into her father's house.

Horatius's wife died when he was 68. He lived 12 years without his best friend before dying at the age of 80.

To the non-believer, this is a pretty grim and hopeless story. To the believer, it is grim, yet not without hope! Bonar had faith in his omniscient and sovereign Lord, Who works all things to be good and best. Bonar penned these words in 1857. Their truth is just as applicable today.

Thy way, not mine, O Lord,
However dark it be;
Lead me by thine own hand,
Choose out the path for me.

Smooth let it be or rough,
It will be still the best;
Winding or straight, it leads
Right onward to thy rest.

I dare not choose my lot;
I would not, if I might;
Choose thou for me, my God,
So I shall walk aright.

The kingdom that I seek
Is thine; so let the way
That leads to it be thine,
Else I must surely stray.

Take thou my cup, and it
With joy or sorrow fill,
As best to thee may seem;
Choose thou my good and ill.

Choose thou for me my friends,
My sickness or my health;
Choose thou my cares for me
My poverty or wealth.

Not mine, not mine the choice
In things or great or small;
Be thou my Guide, my Strength,
My wisdom and my all.

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