I bless Thee that I know Thee.
I once lived in the world, but was ignorant of its Creator,
was partaker of Thy providences, but knew not the Provider,
was blind while enjoying the sunlight,
was deaf to all things spiritual, with voices all around me,
understood many things, but had no knowledge of Thy ways,
saw the world, but did not see Jesus only.
O happy day, when in Thy love's sovereignty
Thou didst look on me, and call me by grace.
Then did the dead heart begin to beat,
the darkened eye glimmer with light,
the dull ear catch Thy echo,
and I turned to Thee and found Thee,
a God ready to hear, willing to save.
Then did I find my heart at enmity to Thee, vexing Thy Spirit;
Then did I fall at Thy feet and hear Thee thunder,
'The soul that sinneth, it must die,'
But when grace made me to know Thee,
and admire a God who hated sin,
Thy terrible justice held my will submissive.
My thoughts were then as knives cutting me head.
Then didst Thou come to me in silken robes of love,
and I saw Thy Son dying that I might live,
and in death I found my all.
My soul doth sing at the remembrance of that peace;
The gospel coronet brought a sound unknown to me before
that reached my heart - and I lived -
never to lose my hold on Christ or His hold on me.
Grant that I may always weep to the praise of mercy found,
and tell to others as long as I live,
that Thou art a sin-pardoning God,
taking up the blasphemer and the ungodly,
and washing them from their deepest stain."
- from The Valley of Vision