The Genuine Pastor The sweetest mercies of God!

(Robert Hawker, "Zion's Pilgrim" 1827)

All afflictions which tend to . . .
  bring the soul to God,
  keep up a life of communion with the Redeemer,
  make us sensible of the gracious influence of the Holy Spirit,
  spiritualize our affections,
  wean our hearts from a world from which we must soon part,
and promote a more intimate acquaintance with that world in
which we are shortly forever to dwell--are undeserving the name
of afflictions! They are among the sweetest mercies of God!

God removes earthly comforts--in order to make room for heavenly
delights. He empties the soul of all creature-comforts--that He may
fill it with Creator-mercies. We should embrace our afflictions, as
affording the choicest proofs of divine love.