Grace and peace to you through our Lord Jesus Christ!
“For YHWH will comfort Zion; God will comfort all her waste places, and will make her wilderness like Eden, her desert like the garden of YHWH; joy and gladness will be found in her, thanksgiving and the voice of song.” - Isaiah 51:3
William Cowper (1731-1800) was an English poet who suffered from severe depression. From within his own personal darkness and anguish, he wrote some of the most profound Christian poetry. God met him in his wilderness and made it into a garden like Eden, which has fed struggling Christians throughout the past few centuries.
Here is his poem titled "Light Shines in the Darkness" (it is also a hymn called God moves in a mysterious way):
God moves in a mysterious way, his wonders to perform;
He plants his footsteps in the sea, and rides upon the storm.
Deep in unfathomable mines of never failing skill;
He treasures up his bright designs, and his sovereign will.
Ye fearful saints fresh courage take, the clouds ye so much dread
Are big with mercy, and shall break in blessings on your head.
Judge not the Lord by feeble sense, but trust him for his grace;
Behind a frowning providence, he hides a smiling face.
His purposes will ripen fast, unfolding ev'ry hour;
The bud may have a bitter taste, but sweet will be the flow'r.
Blind unbelief is sure to err, and scan his work in vain;
God is his own interpreter, and he will make it plain.
The third stanza touched my heart in this current desert of life, and helped me to see that God is bringing joy and gladness to my life in mysterious ways. Which stanza touches your heart? How is God turning your desert into a garden like Eden?
Grace and peace,