The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.—JOB i. 21.
What Thou hast given, Thou canst take,
And when Thou wilt new gifts can make.
All flows from Thee alone;
When Thou didst give it, it was Thine;
When Thou retook’st it, ‘t was not mine.
Thy will in all be done.
We are ready to praise when all shines fair; but when life is overcast, when all things seem to be against us, when we are in fear for some cherished happiness, or in the depths of sorrow, or in the solitude of a life which has no visible support, or in a season of sickness, and with the shadow of death approaching,—then to praise God; then to say, This fear, loneliness, affliction, pain, and trembling awe are as sure tokens of love, as life, health, joy, and the gifts of home: “The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away;” on either side it is He, and all is love alike; “blessed be the name of the Lord,”—this is the true sacrifice of praise. What can come amiss to a soul which is so in accord with God? What can make so much as one jarring tone in all its harmony? In all the changes of this fitful life, it ever dwells in praise.