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Upon a Picture and a Statue

Klopfholz_mit_Beiteln

In what a differing manner is the image and representation of the same person brought into these two pieces of art. In the one it is effected by the soft and silent touches of the pencil, which happily convey likeness and beauty together. And the other is formed by the rough and loud strokes of the hammer, and by the deep cuttings and sculptures of instruments of steel.

In a strange and far differing way is the heavenly image of God formed in the souls of the new converts, when first made partakers of the divine nature. In some, God paints (if I may so speak) his own likeness by still and calm delineation of it up on the table of their hearts.

And in others he carves it by afflicting them with a great measure of tears, and wounding their souls with a thorough sense both of the guilt and defilement of sin.

But in this diversity of working, God is in no way necessitated or limited by the disposition and temper of the matter, as other agents are, but is freely guided by the counsel of his will — which is the sole rule and measure of all his actions towards the creature. (as his word is of theirs towards him).

Lord therefore do with me what you please,

let me be yours,

and I will not prescribe your wisdom the way to make me yours:

Bruise, break, wound, yea, kill, Lord

so that I may be made alive again by your power,

and bear your holy image,

according to which I was first made,

and to which by your grace and might only I can be restored.