Some people have internal struggles that others don’t know about. They sometimes share their inner turmoil with the people closest to them. This mental, emotional, and spiritual anguish may be related to doubt, worry, lust, anger, guilt, inadequacy, overcoming a particular sin, carrying heavy responsibility, grief, depression, loneliness, or other issues that, through repeated cycles, can lead to despair.
I have had some of these internal struggles at times in my life, and have found various sources of help and encouragement. Learning how other people have persevered is one such source of help. One of these people is William Cowper.
William Cowper (1731-1800) was an English poet and hymn writer best known for his friendship with John Newton (author of Amazing Grace) and for his hymn, There Is A Fountain Filled With Blood. He wrote many other hymns as well. Cowper (pronounced “Cooper” – say it right in your head as you read this 🙂 ) was plagued with internal struggles for much of his life. He was even institutionalized for a few years for insanity. Through the years when experiencing waves of internal turmoil, Cowper found hope in Jesus.
One of his hymns has especially encouraged me and may help you. It expresses his longing to be free from the chains of earthly life and to be in the presence of His Savior. I have written it inside the cover of my Bible as a reminder of my hope. The waves of doubt, burden, and inadequacy that threaten to overwhelm only intensify my longing to be with Him.
To Jesus, the crown of my hope,
my soul is in haste to be gone;
oh, bear me, ye cherubim, up,
and waft me away to His throne.
My Saviour, whom absent I love;
whom not having seen, I adore;
whose name is exalted above
all glory, dominion, and power–
Dissolve Thou these bands that detain
my soul from her portion in Thee,
ah! strike off this adamant chain,
and make me eternally free.
When that happy era begins,
when arrayed in Thy glories I shine,
nor grieve any more, by my sins,
the bosom on which I recline–
Oh, then shall the veil be removed!
and round me Thy brightness be poured;
I shall meet Him whom absent I loved,
I shall see whom unseen I adored.
And then, never more shall the fears,
the trials, temptations, and woes,
which darken this valley of tears,
intrude on my blissful repose.