When they are twisted out of my hand (“Solitude Sweetened” by James Meikle, 1730-1799)

“Mankind is born for trouble as surely as sparks fly upward.” (Job 5:7) O, what losses and crosses, sorrows and distresses, uncertainties and anxieties, do mankind labor under! Godly wisdom will lead me to expect nothing but vanity and vexation here below. But, O! how happy is the soul that has all the treasure in heaven–all his happiness in God! May this be my case, and then I shall triumph in the midst of losses, distresses, disappointments, and pain! I take a loose hold of all earthly things, that when they are twisted out of my hand–they may not torment my heart! Eternal felicity secured, is a noble panacea, and a sufficient antidote against the heaviest misfortunes and disappointments of this deceitful world! I rest, and am composed, and calmly wait on You, resigned to heaven’s determination, in everything concerning me in time–until I arrive at that better country, at that perfect state, where there is neither disappointment nor pain!

Alone with the compassionate Savior

How lonely may be your grief, O believer! None share your sorrow, few understand it. You are ‘as a sparrow alone on the house-top.’ There are none to watch with you in the garden of your anguish–your wounded heart, like the stricken deer, bleeds and mourns in secret. But your sorrow is all known to your loving, compassionate Savior; whose wisdom appointed it, whose love sent it, whose grace sustains it, and who will soothe and strengthen with His tenderest sympathy. Let your labor of love, your lonely sorrow, throw you more entirely upon, and bring you into closer, more believing, and more loving relations with, the Savior; wean you more from the creature; separate you more from the world; and set you more supremely apart from God. Oh! then you will thank Him for the discipline of loneliness as among the holiest and most precious blessings of your life!

From “consider Jesus” by Octavious Winslow