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Part 3

Why should a sinful man complain,

When mildly chasten’d for his good?

Start from the salutary pain,

And tremble at a Father’s rod?

Why should I grieve His hand to’ endure,

Or murmur to accept my cure?

Beneath the afflictive stroke I fall,

And struggle to give up my will;

Weeping I own ’tis mercy all;

Mercy pursues and holds me still,

Kindly refuses to depart,

And strongly vindicates my heart.

Humbly I now the rod revere,

And mercy in the judgment find;

’Tis God afflicts; I own Him near;

’Tis He, ’tis He severely kind,

Watches my soul with jealous care,

Disdainful of a rival there.

’Tis hence my ravish’d friends I mourn,

And grief weighs down my weary head;

Far from my bleeding bosom torn,

The dear, loved, dangerous joys are fled:

Hence my complaining never ends,—

O! I have lost my friends, my friends!

Long my reluctant folly held,

Nor gave them to my God’s command;

Hardly at length constraint to yield;

For, O! the angel seized my hand,

Broke off my grasp, forbad my stay,

And forced my lingering soul away.

Yes; the divorce at last is made,

My soul is crush’d beneath the blow;

The judgment falls, so long delay’d,

And lays my stubborn spirit low;

My hope expires, my comfort ends:

O! I have lost my friends, my friends!

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