Amy Carmichael has been a favourite writer since I found a little book of her poems in my church library. To be honest, I’m not sure I ever returned the book. I know it’s awful… but I moved, okay?
Carmichael lived a challenging life, struggling with illness, loneliness, probably depression as well. Yet every ounce of the strength God gave her was spent changing the lives of young Indian girls rescued from temple prostitution. Words from the lives of those who’ve hurt and still experienced the joy of God’s grace always speak the loudest. I love the honesty of Amy Carmichael, and she never ceases to be WISE and TURE.
In the last few weeks and months my mind has been scattered, unfocused, far from quieted. Life has a way of pushing and pulling our thoughts and emotions off a course of quiet trust. Most of the time I’m not even fully aware of how turned around and off kilter I’ve become. Then I stumbled across this poem… and with it the truth of where our minds should be as children of a living and magnificent God.
This is where I want to be, Lord… and where I so often am not. I am sorry I explain away my mind’s unrest as a result of my business, life stress, even the way you made me. Thank you for reminding me that quietness of mind is really the consequence of an unfaltering trust in your love, kindness, constant provision. Help me trust this reality of who You are fully, even in my restless moments. Let me see that peace in my mind and heart reflects immeasurable GLORY to You.
GIVE ME A QUIET MIND
When winds are blowing, waves are rising, falling
And all the air is full of dust and spray;
When voices, like to sea birds’ plaintive calling,
Confuse my day;
Then, then I know Thee, Lord of highest heaven
In newborn need discover Thee, and find
Nought can discomfort him to whom is given
A quiet mind.
When hopes have failed, and heavy sadness crusheth,
And doubt and fear would weave their deadly spell,
Then thought of Thee my troubled spirit husheth;
And all is well.
In midnight hours when weariness ignoreth
Heaven’s starry host, and battle wounds are mine,
Then Thy right hand uplifteth and outpoureth
Love’s oil and wine.
O Blessed Lord, beyond the moment’s sorrow
I see above, beaneath, before, behind–
Eternal Love. Give me today, tomorrow,
A quiet mind
Tomorrow (or, sometime this week) I’ll share my all-time favourite Carmichael poem.