Photo by John-Morgan
Whatever it be, I'm sure we all have some things--material or immaterial--that we are hoping for. Waiting for what we want, and not even knowing if we'll indeed receive it, is hard and can easily produce grumbling and discontent.
I came across this poem the other day, which was apparently written as a song of praise. Here's what's so amazing about it:
"The tragedies of life--the death of her mother at age 3, a hip injury that left her an invalid at age 19, and the death of her fiance just one day before their wedding--produced in Anne Steele's heart a response of songs of praise, most of them published anonymously." (Women of Faith Study Bible)
Miss Steele faced many tragedies which could easily have turned her heart into steel. Instead, she chose not to grumble, but to praise.
Father, Whate'er of Earthly Bliss
I really like the lines, "Give me a calm and thankful heart, From every murmur free." What a great prayer.
Father, whate'er of earthly blissThy sovereign will denies,Accepted at Thy throne, let thisMy humble prayer, arise:
Give me a calm and thankful heart,From every murmur free;The blessing of Thy grace impart,And make me live to Thee.
Let the sweet hope that Thou art mineMy life and death attend,Thy presence through my journey shine,And crown my journey's end.--Anne Steele (1716-1778)
If that's not enough--read a copy of The Voice of the Martyrs sometime (you can get a free subscription, but what a great cause to support with a financial gift). You'll read about an 86-year old man in Pakistan who would not renounce his Christian faith even when a Muslim mob of 3,000 stormed his village and burned homes. Everyone else ran for their lives, but this man could not walk or run.
Or there's the story of Musa Mohammed Yusuf, whose two sons (ages 11 and 12) were beheaded by Muslim radicals in Somalia--all because Musa gave a woman a Bible.
Then, in the Punjab province of Pakistan, a Christian woman was burned by radical Muslims who poured Kerosene on her. The mob also burned 16 homes and damaged 60 others.
So whenever the temptation to grumble about what we want but don't have hits, may this serve as a big fat reality check for us, and leave us feeling nothing but amazingly grateful for all that we do have.
Father, whate'er of earthly bliss
Thy sovereign will denies,
Accepted at Thy throne, let this
My humble prayer, arise:
Give me a calm and thankful heart,
From every murmur free;
The blessing of Thy grace impart,
And make me live to Thee.