Wednesday, December 12, 2012


John Newton: Perplexity Relieved

I'm still reading John Newton off and on, and today I was looking through his Olney hymns and found many that I really like either in part or whole.  The one below is one of my new favorites because it reflects my own experience struggling with sanctification and the daily slog through sin, guilt, and self-absorption.  The title is "Perplexity Relieved."

 Uncertain how the way to find
Which to salvation led;
I listened long, with anxious mind,
To hear what others said.

When some of joys and comforts told
I feared that I was wrong;
For I was stupid, dead, and cold,
Had neither joy nor song.

The Lord my lab’ring heart relieved,
And made my burden light;
Then for a moment I believed,
Supposing all was right.

Of fierce temptations others talked,
Of anguish and dismay;
Through what distresses they had walked,
Before they found the way.

Ah! then I thought my hopes were vain,
For I had lived at ease;
I wished for all my fears again,
To make me more like these.

I had my wish, the LORD disclosed
The evils of my heart;
And left my naked soul, exposed
To Satan’s fiery dart.

Alas! “I now must give it up,”
I cried in deep despair;
How could I dream of drawing hope,
From what I cannot bear!

Again my Savior brought me aid,
And when he set me free;
“Trust simply on my word, he said,
And leave the rest to me.”

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