I am not often moved by poetry, but George MacDonald, a contemporary and friend of Mark Twain and inspiration to C. S. Lewis speaks to my heart on occasion, and this poem in regards to submission and trusting God’s purposes is so poignantly honest and clear, it is my prayer today. “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose” (Rom 8.28). God allowed Job to be tested by losing everything except his wife. God allowed Peter to be sifted like wheat. Paul served the extent of his ministry with a physical ailment that greatly disturbed him, and eleven of the twelve apostles were murdered for the faith. “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,” declares the LORD (Is 55.8).REMEMBER, Lord, thou hast not made me good.
Or if thou didst, it was so long ago
I have forgotten-and never understood,
I humbly think. At best it was a crude,
A rough-hewn goodness, that did need this woe,
This sin, these harms of all kinds fierce and rude,
To shape it out, making it live and grow. But Thou art making me, I thank Thee, Sire. What Thou has done and doest, Thou knowest well, And I will help Thee: gently in Thy fire I will lie burning; on thy potter’s wheel I will whirl patient, though my brain should reel; Thy grace shall be enough the grief to quell, And growing strength perfect, through weakness dire. I have not knowledge, wisdom, insight, thought, Nor understanding, fit to justify Thee to Thy work, O Perfect! Thou hast brought Me up to this; and lo! What Thou hast wrought, I cannot comprehend. But I can cry, “O enemy, the Maker hath not done; One day thou shalt behold, and from the sight shalt run!” The faith I will, aside is easily bent;
But of thy love, my God, one glimpse alone
Can make me absolutely confident-
With faith, hope, joy, in love responsive blent.
My soul then, in the vision mighty grown,
Its father and its fate securely known,
Falls on thy bosom with exultant moan. Thou workest perfectly. And if it seem Some things are not so well, ‘tis but because They are too loving deep, too lofty wise, For me, poor child, to understand their laws. My highest wisdom, half is but a dream; My love runs helpless like a falling stream; Thy good embraces ill, and lo! Its illness dies.
– George MacDonald