Evening, September 27, edited from Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening
“My beloved extended his hand through the opening, And my feelings were aroused for him.” — Song of Solomon 5:4
Knocking was not enough, for my heart was too full of sleep, too cold and ungrateful to arise and open the door, but the touch of his effective grace has made my soul stir itself up. Oh, the longsuffering of my Beloved, to remain when he found himself shut out, and me asleep upon the bed of sluggishness! Oh, the greatness of his patience, to knock and knock again, and to add his voice to his knocking, imploring me to open to him! How could I have refused him! Vile heart, blush and be confounded! But what the greatest kindness of all is this, that he becomes his own porter and unbars the door himself. Thrice blessed is the hand which condescends to lift the latch and turn the key. Now I see that nothing but my Lord’s own power can save such a wayward mass of wickedness as I am; rules fail, even the gospel has no effect upon me, till his hand is stretched out. Now, also, I perceive that his hand is good where all else is unsuccessful; he can open when nothing else will. Blessed be his name; I feel his gracious presence even now. Well may my feelings move for him, when I think of all that he has suffered for me, and of my stingy return. I have allowed my affections to wander. I have set up rivals. I have grieved him. Sweetest and dearest of all beloveds, I have treated you as an unfaithful wife treats her husband. Oh, my heartless sins, my heartless self. What can I do? Tears are a poor show of my repentance; my whole heart boils with indignation at myself. Rogue that I am, to treat my Lord, my All in All, my exceedingly great joy, as though he were a stranger. Jesus, you forgive freely, but this is not enough; prevent my unfaithfulness in the future. Kiss away these tears, and then purge my heart and bind it with sevenfold cords to yourself, never to wander more.