Friday, November 20, 2009
sing the God...
"THE PSALM OF THANKSGIVING.
Psalm cxlvi. 1, 2.
PRA1SE YE THE LORD. PRAISE THE LORD, O MY SOUL ! WHILE
I LIVE WILL I PRAISE THE LORD : I WILL SING PRAISES
UNTO MY GOD WHILE I HAVE ANY BEING.
I can hardly think that so little a thing as even the wild flower, springing up and blooming almost under the last snows of winter, was originally planted and has been nourished so carefully either for me or for any other man. Rather, I am ready to believe, it exists for itself; created and nourished through cold and heat, in all stages of its growth, to be the flower it is, to fulfil in its sphere the beautiful idea which it embodies. There may be that, perhaps, in the Divine Soul which must in this way give forth its sweet benignity. Still more, we may think it is so, throughout the compass of living existence. There is joy enough in life itself to justify the creative Wisdom...
All things are continually coming in truth into one web; and fast as the shuttle flies weaving them together, the connections and secret influences are multiplied and strengthened: at the same time, however, each thread, each filament, is a whole, not only contributing to the great texture, but receiving of it strength and compactness. There is at once all in each, and each in all. These ends of existence, these hidden causes, continually projecting themselves into multitudinous and beautiful effects, rise in ascending scale, as natures are higher; in man, as highest, they show themselves at their greatest elevation. Him, the Divine Life inspires. It excites the deepest aspirations, the sweetest affections, thoughts pure and bright as light, deeds nobler than heroism, words true to the soul and true to God; these all, movements of his inner being, growths of his life, substantial and elemental portions of the spiritual fabric, whose basis is on the earth amidst the fluctuations' of time, but whose summit rises ever upward through the heavens amidst the calm Sabbath of the Eternal. So his end is no other than celestial and immortal. His, in one word, is the filial union with the Father, signified by prayer and praise, and preeminently by the hymn. " What else," Epictetus is reported to have said, "what else can I, lame old man, if not sing the God ? Sure, if I had been a nightingale, I would have done the things of a nightingale; if a swan, those of a swan; but now that I am partaker of reason, I ought to sing God in the hymn; this is my work, I am doing it; nor will I leave this assigned order while it is given me: you, moreover, I invite to this same song."