Saturday, February 23, 2013

at journey's end

The following words were read recently at a student gathering, where teens had come together to pray for a family whose mother had recently died.  They are taken from the last section of The Pilgrim's Progress…

I now see myself at my journey's end; my days of toil are over. I am going now to see that Head that was crowned with thorns, and that Face that was spit upon for me.

I have formerly lived by hearing and by faith; but now I am going to where I will live by sight and will be with Him in whose company I delight.

I have always loved to hear my Lord spoken of, and wherever I have seen the print of His shoe on the earth, I have desired to set my foot, too.

His name has been to me as a priceless treasure -- sweeter than all perfumes. His voice has been music to my ears, and I have more earnestly desired to see His face than those who would most desire to see the light of the sun.  I have gathered His Word which became my food, and used it as a remedy against fainting along the way. He has held my course steady, and I have forsaken all my sins.  Yes, He has strengthened my steps in His way."

--John Bunyan, "Stand-fast's final words" in The Pilgrims Progress, Part 2, by John Bunyan, Cheryl V. Ford translation. Painting above is "Pilgrims in Sight of the Celestial City,” by Henry Dawson (1854).

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