[Spoken by Christ to the doubting or afflicted soul:]
Though afflicted, tempest-toss'd,
Comfortless awhile thou art,
Do not think thou canst be lost--
Thou art graven on my heart:
All thy wastes I will repair,
Thou shalt be rebuilt anew;
And in thee it shall appear
What a God of love can do.
- Anglican cleric and hymnographer John Newton, from his hymn "To the Afflicted"
(Painting: Christ as the Good Shepherd, 18th-cent. Bessarabian icon; note the symbolic abbreviations IHC and XC--for their meanings, see my blog post from last Friday)
Note to My Readers: from mid-June to mid-August (6/18 - 8/20), I will be taking a summer break from posting new articles for my Thursday and Friday slots. This will only affect my Thursday series on the global growth of Christianity, and my Friday series, the "Theological Bestiary" of birds, both of which will resume in late August. During the summer, I'll be dusting off some of my best essays from the first few years of this blog (a decade ago), as well as my verse play "Thus Ends the World," and re-posting them in the Thursday and Friday slots. All other weekdays will continue to feature new material throughout the summer.