We will always remember that best and brightest of hours when we first saw the Lord, lost our burden, received the gift of grace, rejoiced in full salvation, and went on our way in peace. It was springtime in the soul; the winter was past; the mutterings of Sinai's thunders were hushed; the flashings of its lightnings were no more perceived; God was beheld as reconciled; the law threatened no vengeance, and justice demanded no punishment.
Then the flowers appeared in our heart. Hope, love, peace, and patience sprang from the ground; the hyacinth of repentance, the snowdrop of pure holiness, the crocus of golden faith, the daffodil of early love—all decked the garden of the soul.
The time of the singing of birds had arrived, and we rejoiced with thanksgiving; we magnified the holy name of our forgiving God, and our resolve was, "Lord, I am Yours, Yours alone. All I am, and all I have, I devote to You. You have bought me with Your blood—let me spend myself and be spent in Your service. In life and in death let me be consecrated to You."
How well have we kept this resolve? Our first love burned with a holy flame of devotion to Jesus—is it the same now? Is it possible that Jesus may say to us, "I have something against you, because you have left your first love"? Sadly we have done little for our Master's glory. Our winter has lasted all too long. We are as cold as ice when we should feel a summer's glow and bloom with sacred flowers. We give God pennies when He deserves much more, deserves our heart's blood to be coined in the service of His church and of His truth. But shall we continue in this way? O Lord, after You have blessed us so richly, shall we be ungrateful and become indifferent to Your good cause and work? Quicken us that we may return to our first love and do our first works! Send us a joyful spring, O Sun of Righteousness.