Whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. (Philippians 3: 7)
When George Matheson, the blind Scottish preacher, was buried, they lined his grave with red roses commemorating his life of love and sacrifice. And it was Matheson, this man who was so beautifully and significantly honored, who wrote the following hymn in 1882. It was written in five minutes, during a period he later called “the most severe mental suffering,” and it has since become known around the world.
O Love that wilt not let me go,
I rest my weary soul in Thee,
I give Thee back the life I owe,
That in thine ocean depths its flow
May richer, fuller be.
O Light that followest all my way,
I yield my flickering torch to Thee,
My heart restores its borrowed ray,
That in Thy sunshine’s glow its day
May brighter, fairer be.
O Joy that seekest me through pain,
I cannot close my heart to Thee,
I trace the rainbow through the rain,
And feel the promise is not vain,
That morn shall tearless be.
O Cross that liftest up my head,
I dare not ask to hide from Thee,
I lay in dust life’s glory dead,
And from the ground there blossoms red,
Life that shall endless be.
There is a legend of an artist who had found the secret of a wonderful red that no other artist could imitate. He never told the secret of the color, but after his death an old wound was discovered over his heart. It revealed the source of the matchless hue in his pictures.
The moral of the legend is that no great achievement can be made, no lofty goal attained, nor anything of great value to the world accomplished, except at the cost of the heart’s blood.
Cowman, L. B. E.; Reimann, Jim (2008-09-09). Streams in the Desert: 366 Daily Devotional Readings (pp. 419-420). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.