A Broken Flower

Conversation between Jesus and the Church

Ausbund, 105

The tempter comes in many forms, not infrequently like that of an angel. With clever suggestion he seeks to persuade and confuse. Therefore watch and pray! Do not let him steal your crown! Prepare yourself to fight at all times.

Oh Lord, even though I fight temptation for all I am worth, I soon find myself lying sprawled out, fallen again. My strength is so weak. I sway like a reed in my human frailty. Oh Lord, stabilise me! Help me at all times!

Get up and fight bravely on! Do not let the devil capture you! Keep fighting, and you will make it through.

I am like a flower broken from its stem and wilting. Unless your power begins to flow into me I will not make it! You know that I am made of dust. There is nothing trustworthy in me. You know my weakness. Remember me! Make me strong like Samson! Make me unmoveable before Goliath’s taunts!

You can count on me. I will not leave you! Exactly when you need it, I will give you overcoming power.

Lord, every so often you let me taste your wonderful sweetness. But then it escapes me again and I am plunged back into misery and distress, utterly bereft of your strength. This is my complaint. Please come near to me, your child!

Even though it may seem like I am far away, it is not the case. I only let you feel that way so you may learn to depend on me—so you may cry to me for help at all times, without which you are nothing.

Let your powerful grace then flow into me! When I taste your kindness my anxiety disappears. Give me food from heaven so I may leap for joy again and praise you! Remember, my body is fragile. When great anxiety comes, your joy escapes me again. Save me from my own frailty!

If you want to rise from the dead and live with me, you will first have to die. You will have to suffer with me to inherit the Kingdom with me in never-ending joy!

Let me persevere to the end with you! Let me confess you with my mouth and with my life before the world. Let me stand firm in your covenant. Oh Lord, triumph in me!

Hans Betz,       -1537, Eger, Franken, Germany, imprisoned and died at Passau in Germany

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