Keeping the Faith

I can’t speak for you but, this has been the longest summer I can remember. It has had many distractions in my life, and our lives as Christians and citizens of free countries and it seems like none of them were for the good, or at least they seemed to have little good at the time. My friends, and my God have pulled me through, sometimes nearly against my will. I’m not sure that the trials of ’14 are over, in fact, I’m quite sure they are not.

Still, as always, I find comfort in the music of my faith, in many ways, I think it one of the great contributions of Protestantism is in the awesome (in the real sense) hymns of faith that we have brought to our worship. These are some of my favorites, and I’m sharing them with you today mostly because maybe they will help you in your troubles as they do me in mine.

I was reminded today of a poem that Jess adores, and I’m going to use part of it but, I will let her introduce it. Jess’ words are all from Naught for your Comfort and are in italics

Chesterton’s Ballad of the White Horse deals with an episode in what must have seemed at the time the doomed attempts by King Alfred of Wessex to deal with the invading Norsemen. No one did historical-Romantic despair like GKC, and I adore the whole poem. It is far too long to quote in full, but the lines which came back to me as the result of reading the two posts were those Our Lady speaks to King Alfred at the lowest moment of his fortunes:

I tell you naught for your comfort,
Yea, naught for your desire,
Save that the sky grows darker yet
And the sea rises higher

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And Jess also reminds us of what our heritage as Christians is

Now it proves the flint against which the iron of resolve is sharpened, and the Saxons rally and they win, even though all had seemed lost. Alfred was not the most charismatic or dramatic of leaders, but he won, and this is why:

And this was the might of Alfred,
At the ending of the way;
That of such smiters, wise or wild,
He was least distant from the child,
Piling the stones all day.

Alfred has faith and he had patience, and he had resilience; he lacked the capacity to despair. In short, he possessed all the Christian virtues. He listened to Our Lady and he understood her advice, and so, at the height of the battle:

 

 

These last two selections are from the battle anthems of our peoples, and they remind us not to go gently into the night

 

 

The King looked up, and what he saw
Was a great light like death,
For Our Lady stood on the standards rent,
As lonely and as innocent
As when between white walls she went
And the lilies of Nazareth.

And so, through many a sorrow and woe, the steadfast faith of Alfred proved victorious where the charismatic personalities of men with less character failed.

Here there is a lesson for us all – if we will read it.

Advertisements

About NEO
Lineman, Electrician, Industrial Control technician, Staking Engineer, Inspector, Quality Assurance Manager, Chief Operations Officer

13 Responses to Keeping the Faith

  1. Liked by 1 person

  2. the unit says:

    Odd isn’t it? Just Friday I was remembering my childhood, remembering sitting on the floor rolling toy cars or something and hearing Mom humming or singing…’What a friend we have in Jesus’. Found Youtube of it by Lutheran Quartet. Remembering you Lutheran. We were S. Baptists, but same songs of faith I guess. I was wondering where and how to post it on Friday, and now here comes NEO!

    Another I remember which I can still in my mind still hear her humming and singing…’Every day with Jesus is sweeter than the day before’.

    Like

    • NEO says:

      Yes, it is. That song has been running in my mind this week as well, funny, I always thought it was Methodist. 🙂

      Like

      • the unit says:

        Well I saw who wrote it, but I didn’t pay attention of what denomination he was. I just saw on Wiki the song is in Lutheran Hymnal …^ Polack, W.G. (1941). Handbook to the Lutheran Hymnal. St. Louis: Concordia. p. 323… And thought I remembered you had mentioned being Lutheran before.
        But that’s all beside the point isn’t it. No Lutheran, S. Baptist, Methodist, or any other that I know personally hasn’t and ain’t gonna cut off anyone’s head today or tomorrow…dead or alive. 🙂

        Like

        • NEO says:

          Yep, that’s true, and an ugly start to the week, isn’t it?

          The old Hymnals are the best, the one I have here is a Methodist one from the ’50s, and no you’re right it makes little difference, same God, same good and evil. 🙂

          Like

        • the unit says:

          You have a ’50’s Methodist Hymnal? I’m ashamed for what I’ve likely lost. I have my grandmothers piano, she born ’93. Several years ago I wasn’t paying attention and some family member moved piano bench out to outbuilding to make room for weight bench. Old, and I mean old Baptist Hymnal was in it. I may can still find, but condition doubtful.
          Afraid I headed in direction of Genghis Khan, who may have fell off his horse, and Jimmy the Greek, who couldn’t jump.
          But still ridin’ so far, can’t jump, but can shake a leg. 🙂

          Like

        • NEO says:

          Sounds like me, my friend. 🙂

          Like

        • the unit says:

          Some my age might call it “restless leg syndrome”, but it’s not. I shake wife’s leg and ask and say “it’s daylight, ain’t you cooking yet?” Just kidding, I ain’t Muslim exactly… no inexactly. 🙂

          Like

  3. the unit says:

    Your first sentence really struck me to the bone. Just before I had to completely retire, worked like last ten years part-time, I remember saying to myself and others…I don’t want this long day to be over. They’re numbered and here I am and it’s ok with me if I stay overtime…no charge. No rush! 🙂

    Like

    • NEO says:

      Yep, that’s a pretty good description of me as well, I’ve never believed in watching the clock, much prefer to go ’till I’m stupid’ as I call it. I’d say it has something to do with liking what you do, or at least liking to do something. No rush at all. 🙂

      Like

      • the unit says:

        Yep. My saved Mom at 90 when docs said heart valve was causing heart/pulmonary problem and requiring pericardiocentesis often… said to docs…”Give me a pill doctor.” My doc says I’ll likely do the same and maybe ask for more than my mom, I think he right, and he 83 and knows.
        🙂

        Like

  4. the unit says:

    As we head to where we headed with this CIC. Is there a song of faith to match this pic of boots on the ground?

    Like

    • NEO says:

      One of the requiems, perhaps. Nothing else I can thinkj of.

      Like

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s