R1986-123 Poem: A Sermon For Children

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::R1986 : page 123::


—Text—The Rose

The roses are in bloom to-day!
Come, children, from your games away
A while to listen in the bower,
And learn from every blooming flower
Truths golden that shall evermore
Be garnered with the heart’s rich store!

Within the garden meet our view
Roses of varied form and hue,
Unfolding now their graceful bloom,
Lading the air with sweet perfume;
From tiny buds to full blooms sweet,
They bend in clusters round our feet.

::R1986 : page 124::

Some robed in white are here displayed,
And dainty ones in pink arrayed;
Some in their golden glory shine;
Some wear the crimson hue of wine.

Charmed by their grace and beauty rare,
We cull some buds and blossoms fair.
Some that were once as fair and gay
We see now fading fast away.
Within the garden’s blooming space,
Can we not here a semblance trace?
And read in this, the rose-crowned rod,
The love and power of nature’s God?

Only a few short months ago,
The roses lay in death below;
In glad springtime the sun and rain
Aroused from sleep to life again;
Triumphant, they arose to bloom
In beauty o’er their winter tomb.

The buds seem like to childhood’s day,
When happy children laugh and play;
The half-blown rose an emblem seems
Of youth, when life is sweet with dreams;
Youth slow expands in grace and power
Till, like the glowing, full-blown flower,
It zenith gains; then age draws on,
And soon the span of life is gone.

The roses spring to bloom their day,
Are early culled or fade away;
So, soon or late, all yield their breath,
Beneath the cruel hand of Death.
The God who clothes the roses fair,
Does he not for his creatures care?

Ah, yes! they’ll rise from out death’s gloom.
He by whose law the roses bloom
In love devised a wondrous plan
To save from death his creature, man:
His Son for all a ransom gave;—
Suffered e’en death our souls to save,
And rose to life on high again
Eternal life to give to men.
He holds the key of Death’s closed gates;
The due time only he awaits.

In all of nature’s wide domain,
There law and order ever reign;
Just so within the realm of grace:
For all things there’s a time, a place;
When, as around its seasons roll,
They bring a springtime for the soul,
Christ will unlock their silent tomb,
And bid them rise again to bloom;
Then all who love the right and truth
Shall flourish on in fadeless youth.

Here let us pause. Again behold
The roses—how their leaves unfold:
The bud, unfolding hour by hour,
At length displays the perfect flower;
Slowly its petals all unfold;
Then do we see the heart of gold.

So, too, unfold God’s plans of grace;
His scheme, deep-laid, no man could trace,
Till time the mystery unsealed;
The hidden riches stood revealed.
The roses their sweet sermon preach,
Graving it deep as any speech.
Does not each glorious blooming flower
Proclaim the wisdom and the power
Of Him who, from his throne above,
Watches o’er all his works in love?



— June 1, 1896 —