Neglected and tattered, his banner of love
Once shattered the death in dead men’s bones,
Then strutted the bone-dust with spirit-laced song–
Where has the wind it ran upon gone?
Trapped in the lungs of the timid renewed,
The violent gust is reduced to a hum.
But creatures must ever take note of the tune.
That lilting breeze holds a shattering hum
Reserved for when fire and prayers are renewed.
Then torchmen will speak till timidity’s gone
And turn to the standard, inventing the song:
The gust grows in shadows and blows through men’s bones
To mend what was tattered, his banner of love.
John Owen, Communion with God, 213-214:
For their sakes he so humbled and emptied himself, in taking on flesh, as to become therein a servant–in the eyes of the world of no esteem nor account; and a true and real servant to the Father. For their sakes he humbled himself, and became obedient. All that he did and suffered in his life comes under this consideration; all which may be referred to these three heads:
(a) Fulfilling all righteousness.
(b) Enduring all manner of persecutions and hardships.
(c) Doing all manner of good to men.
He took on him, for their sakes, a life and course pointed to (Heb. 5:7-8)–a life of prayers, tears, fears, obedience, suffering; and all this with cheerfulness and delight, calling his employment his ‘meat and drink,’ and still professing that the law of this obedience was in his heart–that he was content to do this will of God. he that will sorely revenge the least opposition that is or shall be made to him by others, was content to undergo anything, all things, for believers.
David Edwards, a biographer, describing the poet John Donne:
Here is a man who is thoroughly human, and energetically masculine, as well as being highly intelligent, yet he cannot stop talking about religion when he is supposed to be talking about sex, anymore than he can stop talking about sex when we expect him to be pious.
William Wilberforce doing what wilberforces do best:
I must confess equally boldly that my own solid hopes for the well-being of my country depend, not so much on her navies and armies, nor on the wisdom of her rulers, nor on the spirit of her people, as on the persuasion that she still contains many who love and obey the Gospel of Christ. I believe that their prayers may yet prevail.