There is a picture, that I sometimes see,
Of Jesus, with a child upon his breast.
And other children clustered at his knee--
The little lambs of God, that he had blest.
And this one--lying on the Saviour's arm
Looks up and smiles, in that most sainted face,
And knowing he is well secured from harm
He falls asleep in that safe resting place.
To-night I am so weary, heart, and soul.
So worn out, with a thousand nameless ills.
My spirit longs intensely for its goal
And every fibre of my being thrills
With mighty yearing. "Oh to be that child--
To lie upon my Saviour's breast." I weep,
"And looking on that face so meekly mild,
Forget my tears, and sweetly fall asleep."
It is not always so: sometimes the earth
And earthly friends, can satisfy my heart.
But now--to-night--I feel their shallow worth,
And feel, oh Christ my Saviour, that Thou art
And Thou alone, the only faithful friend
Who knowing all my sins, and seeing me
Just as I am, will pity to the end
And in compassion, judge me tenderly.
I am so weak, and sinful--every day
The sins are failings that I most condemn,
And most abhor in others--I straitway
Go forth, and wickedly walk into them.
But Christ who was in mortal form one time
And dwelt upon the earth, will understand.
And through a love and pity most sublime,
Will write me out a pardon with His hand.
Shells by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Milwaukee: Hauser & Storey, 1873.
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