Bonar, "The Night of Weeping"
Afflictions are preparing for us a "more
abundant entrance," a weightier crown,
a whiter robe, a sweeter rest, a home
made doubly precious by a long exile
and many sufferings here below.
However desperate our earthly warfare may
be, it is not forever. No, it is brief, very brief.
Its end is near, very near. And with the end
come triumph, and honor, and songs of victory.
Then, too, there follows peace, and the return
of the war worn soldier to his quiet dwelling.
This is the joy of the saint. He has fought a
good fight, he has finished the course, he has
kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for
him the crown of righteousness. His battle is
over, and then for him there are rest and home.
Yes, home! And what a
home for us
to return to and abide in forever!
A home prepared before the foundation of the
A home in the many mansions.
A home nearest the throne and heart of God.
A home whose peace shall never be
broken by the sound of war or tempest.
A home whose brightness shall never be
overcast by the remotest shadow of a cloud.
How solacing to the weary spirit to think of
a resting place so near to God, and that resting
place our Father's house where we shall hunger
no more, neither thirst any more, where the sun
shall not scorch us, nor any heat, where the
Lamb that is in the midst of the throne shall
feed us and lead us to living fountains of
waters, and God Himself shall wipe away
all tears from our eyes!
The time is at hand.
The conflicts are almost over.
Our struggles and sorrows are nearly done.
A few more years, and we shall either be laid
quietly to rest, or caught up into the clouds to
meet our coming Lord.
A few more deaths, and then we shall be
knit together in eternal brotherhood with
all the scattered members of God's family.
A few more suns shall rise and set, and then we
shall ascend in the strength of the one unsetting sun.
A few more days shall dawn and darken, and
then shall shine forth the one unending day.
A few more clouds shall gather over us, and
then the world shall be cleared forever.
But a few brief years, and we shall
enter in through the gates into the city,
sitting down beneath the shadow of the
tree of life, feeding upon the hidden
manna, and drinking of the pure river
clear as crystal, which proceeds out of
the throne of God and of the Lamb!
But a few brief years and we shall
see His face, and His name shall be
upon our foreheads!
We have only the foretaste now. The full
brightness is in reserve, and we know that
all that is possible or conceivable of what
is good and fair and blessed, shall one day
be real and visible.
Out of all evil there comes the good;
out of sin comes holiness;
out of darkness, light;
out of death, life eternal;
out of weakness, strength;
out of the fading, the blooming;
out of rottenness and ruin,
loveliness and majesty;
out of the curse come the blessing,
the incorruptible, the immortal,
the glorious, the undefiled!
Our present portion, however, is but the
pledge, not the inheritance. The inheritance
is reserved for the appearing of the Lord.
Here we see but through a glass darkly.
It does not yet appear what we shall be.
We are now but as wayfaring men, wandering
in the lonely night, who see dimly upon the
distant mountain peak the reflection of a sun
that never rises here, but which shall never
set in the "new heavens" hereafter.
And this is enough. It comforts and
cheers us on our dark and rugged way.
It would not be enough hereafter, but
it is enough just now.
This wilderness will do for us until we
cross into Canaan. The tent will do until
the eternal city comes.
The joy of believing is enough,
until we enter on the joy of seeing.
We are content with the "mountain of myrrh,
and the hill of frankincense," until "the day
breaks and the shadows flee away."