Janet Hamilton

(1795-1873 / Scotland)

Lines Addressed To The Rev. Dr. John Muir, of St. James' Parish, Glasgow

Servant of God! through fifty honoured years,
With fears and hopes, with prayerful cries and tears,
With watchful care and ever-active zeal,
With loving skill that wounded but to heal,
Thou led'st the flock committed to thy care
By waters still, and pastures green and fair;
Kept watch and ward, when danger was abroad,
Upon thy towers. Church of the living God!
Pillar and ground of truth! what time the cry,
'Raze, raze her quite,' went forth; when floods rose high;
When schism foaming forth reproach, and hate
Beat on her walls and thundered at the gate-
Thou, with thy brother veterans, stemmed the tide,
For God, in midst of her, was on our side.
Even now, when thousand voices join to sing
The hymn of jubilee, a jarring string
Mars the grand symphony-a hostile tone
Of vengeful meaning, to our ears has gone.
But God our refuge is, and strength, our aid-
Though waters roar we will not be afraid.
We greet thee well, we hail thee on thy road,
Advanced far heaven-ward; Oh! may Israel's God
Remember and accept thine offerings still;
Grant thy heart's wish, thy counsels all fulfil!
Still may He hear thee from His holy heaven,
With saving strength by His own right hand given.
Our fathers' temple, guard! her thou hast set
Above thy chiefest joy; thine eyes shall yet,
Ere God shall call thee to Himself from hence,
On all her glory see a sure defence-
So prays a friend; forgive, and grant the claim;
Our God, our faith, our hope, our church, the same!

Submitted: Tuesday, September 07, 2010
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