Sunday, November 04, 2007

"Afraid? Of What?"

Afraid? Of what?
To feel the spirit's glad release?
To pass from pain to perfect peace,
The strife and strain of life to cease?
Afraid? Of that?

Afraid? Of what?
Afraid to see the Saviour's face,
To hear His welcome, and to trace,
The glory gleam from wounds of grace,
Afraid? Of that?

Afraid? Of what?
A flash - a crash - a pierced heart;
Brief darkness - Light - O Heaven's art!
A wound of His a counterpart!
Afraid? Of that?

Afraid? Of what?
To enter into Heaven's rest,
And yet to serve the Master blessed?
From service good to service best?
Afraid? Of that?

Afraid? Of what?
To do by death what life could not -
Baptize with blood a stony plot,
Till souls shall blossom from the spot?
Afraid? Of that?


This poem was written by E.H. Hamiliton,
after hearing of the death
of his missionary collegue Jack Vinson.
Vinson was martyred in 1931 and showed no fear of
death to his Chinese captors, telling them,
"Kill me, if you wish. I will go straight to God."

Christ Died For Us – We Die For Christ

By Francis H. Rose
(A Christian martyr in the Philippines in 1943)

All human progress up to God
Has stained the stairs of time with blood;
For every gain for Christendom,
Is bought by someone’s martyrdom,
Not ours alone, nor man’s alone.

In furnace fire, a faithful three,
Though bound in chains, in spirit free;
A Fourth drew near with shining feet
And walked with them through livid heat.
A king’s defeat! A king’s defeat!

On seething sea, in darkest night,
The shipwrecked saw a Walking Light,
Defying wave and wind and deep,
He put the wind and wave to sleep.
Ah, He will keep! Ah, He will keep!

With tend’rest touch He heals our ills,
And from His well of life He fills
With living water, strength divine,
Each thirsting branch of this His vine;
For He is mine, and He is mine!

For us He poured the crimson cup,
And bade us take and drink it up.
Himself He poured to set us free,
Help us, O Christ, though few we be,
To drink with Thee; To drink life’s cup with Thee.

Nor did He yet forget to pray
While midnight drifted toward the day.
Then from that hidden garden bower
He rose from prayer with Spirit power
To meet His zero hour, His zero hour.

Ten thousand saints come thronging home
From lion’s den and catacomb;
The fire and sword and beasts defied;
For Christ, their King, they testified,
And gladly died; they gladly died.

With eye of faith we see today
That Cross-led column wind its way,
Up life’s repeated Calvary,
Borne up by superhuman powers,
We rise to take the hill with ours,
O Christ, we follow Thee! We follow Thee!