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THE NEW YEAR
„Gone with our yesterdays; folded apart,
Laid by with the treasures we hide in the heart,
The year that hath left us, so silently shod,
Has carried its records of earth unto God.
How strange was its mingling of bitter and sweet,
Its trials how heavy, its pleasures how fleet;
How often its mercies surprised us, unsought;
How frequent the gifts to our hands, which it brought;
Alas! that we shadowed its glory with sin,
Nor battled its beautiful trophies to win;
And thanks unto Him, who gave pardon and rest,
And wrought for His children whatever was best.
„Cometh in winter the year that is new.
Snow-fall, and frost-rime, and star-beam, and dew,
Shine of the daisies, and blush of the clover,
Rose cup and lily for bees to hang over,
Stir of the wind in the waves of the wheat,
Smile of the violet low at our feet,
Fruitage of orchard, and cluster of vine,
Seed-time and harvest, O man! will be thine,
Once more in this year; for what hath been, shall be,
While the rivers of time seek eternity’s sea.
„So, a Happy New Year, to the babe and the mother,
To gentle wee sister, and rosy cheeked brother.
A Happy New Year to the aged, who wait
Till the Lord opens wide the Paradise gate.
A Happy New Year unto those who have learned
How rich are the guerdons which labor has earned.
And a Happy New Year to the weary, who cling
Through sorrow and pain, to the cross of the King.
„Far down thy fair vista, blithe New Year, we see
The sun gleam of the beautiful Sabbath to be;
From far o’er the billows we hear the glad swells
Amid people in darkness, of church-going bells.
God speed the full time when idols shall fall,
And the banner of Jesus wave white over all;
When the nations shall walk in the light of the Lord,
And Eden’s lost verdure to earth be restored.
„Dear Christ, by Thy passion, Thy grace and Thy power,
Assist us, uplift us, in each clouded hour,
And still by denial, bestowal, delay,
Whatever is needful, oh, give us, we pray!
The year that is far above rubies shall be
The year of our lives that is closest to Thee.
And precious and sacred our changes shall grow,
If heaven-light o’er them in tenderness glow.
Let the burdens of woe, and the conflicts of care,
Alike be relieved by the breathings of prayer;
And happy, or only resigned, let us raise
Each morning and evening the songs of our praise.” —Selected.
— January, 1890 —