Sonnet XIX On His Blindness 1655
When I consider how my light is spent
Ere half my days in this dark world and wide,
And that one talent which is death to hide
Lodg'd with me useless, though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
My true account, lest he returning chide,
"Doth God exact day-labour, light denied?"
fondly ask. But Patience, to prevent
That murmur, soon replies: "God doth not need
Either man's work or his own gifts: who best
Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best. His state
Is kingly; thousands at his bidding speed
And post o'er land and ocean without rest:
They also serve who only stand and wait."
This has to be my favorite poem by Milton. I have it here to keep things in perspective this year. We all have limitations and talents. Christ came to earth as a man for too many reasons to list here but as Hebrews 4:15,16 says
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are--yet was without sin. 16 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
Christ not only understands our weakness, he has promised to help us. We will also be held accountable for our talents whether they be great or small. One of the things I've had to come to grips with is that even though I don't think my poetry is all that great, I think that in some way I have been given a gift and I need to express it. (There is no doubt in my mind that John Milton had talent. Take a peak at Paradise Lost or even Samson Agonistese (if you want something shorter) to look at a familier story in a way that will just blow your mind.)
So... I guess what I am saying is, what is your talent? are you using it? cultivating it? sharing it?
And the reverse is, when you fail, have you expirienced God's grace? Do you grasp the fact that he knows our weakness, that "we are but dust"?
Psalm 103:13-16 says
13 As a father shows compassion to his children,so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him. 14 For he knows our frame;he remembers that we are dust. 15 As for man, his days are like grass;he flourishes like a flower of the field; 16 for the wind passes over it, and it is gone,and its place knows it no more. 17 But the steadfast love of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear him,and his righteousness to children's children, 18 to those who keep his covenantand remember to do his commandments.
Happy New Year!
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