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Sunday, June 11, 2006

Diary of an Old Soul, June 11 - June 17

11. Henceforth all things thy dealings are with me
For out of thee is nothing, or can be,
And all things are to draw us home to thee.
What matter that the knowers scoffing say,
"This is old folly, plain to the new day"?--
If thou be such as thou, and they as they,
Unto thy Let there be, they still must answer Nay.

12. They will not, therefore cannot, do not know him.
Nothing they could know, could be God. In sooth,
Unto the true alone exists the truth.
They say well, saying Nature doth not show him:
Truly she shows not what she cannot show;
And they deny the thing they cannot know.
Who sees a glory, towards it will go. (more on this entry here)

13. Faster no step moves God because the fool
Shouts to the universe God there is none;
The blindest man will not preach out the sun,
Though on his darkness he should found a school.
It may be, when he finds he is not dead,
Though world and body, sight and sound are fled,
Some eyes may open in his foolish head.

14. When I am very weary with hard thought,
And yet the question burns and is not quenched,
My heart grows cool when to remembrance wrought
That thou who know'st the light-born answer sought
Know'st too the dark where the doubt lies entrenched--
Know'st with what seemings I am sore perplexed,
And that with thee I wait, nor needs my soul be vexed.

15. Who sets himself not sternly to be good,
Is but a fool, who judgment of true things
Has none, however oft the claim renewed.
And he who thinks, in his great plenitude,
To right himself, and set his spirit free,
Without the might of higher communings,
Is foolish also--save he willed himself to be.

16. How many helps thou giv'st to those would learn!
To some sore pain, to others a sinking heart;
To some a weariness worse than any smart;
To some a haunting, fearing, blind concern;
Madness to some; to some the shaking dart
Of hideous death still following as they turn;
To some a hunger that will not depart.

17. To some thou giv'st a deep unrest--a scorn
Of all they are or see upon the earth;
A gaze, at dusky night and clearing morn,
As on a land of emptiness and dearth;
To some a bitter sorrow; to some the sting
Of love misprized**--of sick abandoning;
To some a frozen heart, oh, worse than anything!

*I think this comes from misprision, which has to do with bad administration or neglect of a duty. MacDonald was a poet, and he wrote this over a century ago. Vocabularies have changed since then.

The above is excerpted from George MacDonald's A Book of Strife in the Form of The Diary of an Old Soul (Public Domain, 1880). For further information see this post. These are the entries for/from June 11 through June 17.

4 comments:

Kelly said...

Thank you for the picture comment! That is Ms. V. S. in that picture and she said to tell you hello!

Julana said...

...all things draw us home to Thee. . .
How many helps Thou giv'st those who would learn! . . .

Julana said...

I should frame that and hang it on the wall.

Martin LaBar said...

Thanks, Kelly! I appreciate it. God bless the four of you in your ministry this summer.

Julana, I find that MacDonald had some wonderful things to say, and said them concisely and imaginatively. I should put it on my wall, too, along with about a dozen other MacDonald quotes. Thanks.