From Dr. Parker’s sermon on Song of Solomon 2
“Almighty God, thou leadest man by a way that he knoweth not. It is not in man that walketh to direct his steps. Thou knowest all the way, and we see of it but an inch at once. Lead on, thou Mighty One, full of grace and wisdom, full of tenderness and full of judgment. Strength and beauty are with thee. Thou canst not do wrong. Thou wilt pity us when we are infirm. Thou knowest our frame, thou rememberest that we are dust; thou wilt not hasten us unduly on the journey of life. Thou dost cause the sun to set, so that we cannot see the road; then thou dost give thy beloved sleep. Sometimes we are faint, yet even then, by thy grace, pursuing. Our faintness does not lead us to change the road. We rest awhile, we wonder about the new scenes and relations of things, and behold, even in dreams thou art good: for thou dost show to the sealed eyes what is never shown to the open vision. Night and day thou art good. Thou hast stars for the night as well as a sun for the daytime. Behold! who can find out God into perfection? or lay a line upon his power? or sound all the depth of the infinity of his being? We will praise thy grace. Thou hast led us from Bethel onward—from the dream-time to the work-time and the waiting-time. It is still the same God—the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ—ever tender, ever redeeming the souls of men; opening ways that surprise our ignorance, and surrounding us by defenses which no enemy can violate. Blessed be thy name. Praised be the blessed Trinity—Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Reveal thyself unto us in all ways. May we never lose sight of thine image. May our whole life rise to the mystery of thy presence, and feel the infinite joy which is the beginning of profoundest worship, and then pass into tender communion, knowing the riches of grace, the meaning of truth, the warmth of nearness to thy heart; then set us down on the common road that we may do life’s common work with uncommon power and wisdom. We bless thee for growth in grace, for visions of Christ ever brightening, for confidence in Christ ever deepening; so that whilst once the water was but to the ankles it has risen to the knees, and now, lo! how great a river—verily a stream to swim in. This is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes. We are all pilgrims. If we have rested the staff for a moment, it is still within sight; presently we shall take hold of it again and be away on the dusty road, climbing the hard steep, or groping our way through the dull valley. Still our eyes shall be towards the lode-star of the skies; still our spirits shall yearn for thee; still we shall now and again feel in the air some scent of a better place, some odour wafted from the hidden paradise. Be this our experience, be this our joy, through Christ Jesus, Son of man, Son of God. Then at the last we shall hardly know when we have exchanged earth for heaven. Amen.”
– People’s Bible, The – The People’s Bible – Ecclesiastes – Isaiah 26: Volume 14.