Saturday, January 07, 2006

The Hound of Heaven

Francis Thompson's poem The Hound of Heaven has always meant a great deal to me because it describes so well my own experience with God. When you're raised in a Christian home, it's sometimes difficult to discern just when Jesus becomes real to you. I've never been able to put a date and time on the beginning of my real walk with God, but I know that it happened sometime during the summer I was thirteen. I sensed His relentless pursuit of me until I quit running. My life has never been the same.

Last night I was talking to a couple people who were familiar with the term "Hound of Heaven" but unfamiliar with the poem. Here's the first verse:

I fled Him, down the nights and down the days;
I fled Him, down the arches of the years;
I fled Him, down the labyrinthine ways
Of my own mind; and in the mist of tears
I hid from Him, and under running laughter.
Up vistaed hopes I sped;
And shot, precipitated,
Adown Titanic glooms of chasmed fears,
From those strong Feet that followed, followed after.
But with unhurrying chase,
And unperturbèd pace,
Deliberate speed, majestic instancy,
They beat - and a Voice beat
More instant than the Feet -
"All things betray thee, who betrayest Me."

Read the rest here .

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