Lieder der Hutterischen Brüder, 206
Have mercy on me Lord, even though I angered you with my great wickedness! For a long time, even while lying bound in my sins, I have been crying to you.
I arranged my affairs to suit the world. The world and its doings appealed to me. Terrible vices held me fast and I sank into worries about material things.
A few details of the Christian life kept me from entering it. My flesh stood in the way and I trusted in my own understanding. I went by my sentiments and emotions, even though they misled me over and over.
My flesh, driven by sensual lust, pushed for ever greater liberty and drew back in horror from the cross.
Wise in my own eyes, I rushed blindly onward in the manner of Adam’s race. Ruled by the flesh, I had no good motivations. I craved with overwhelming desire the forbidden fruit of sin. The serpent had me on the brink of denying your grace for good, Lord, but I was not happy.
Affliction and terror followed me. I sensed your wrath and knew I was lost. Even though I could not see your face (my belief in you had nearly disappeared) and the truth lay hidden from my sight, I knew that I had come to the end of human counsel. I lay in the anguish of death and despair.
Then you Lord, showed me grace. In the depths of my misery, grace worked a miracle in my soul. It purged out my sin and turned my grief into absolutely boundless joy!
Sheltered in the friendly warmth of your grace, protected in the hollow of your right hand, nothing in this world shall harm me anymore.
You took me, like Abraham, and made me your child of blessing. Now what I need is unshakeable faith like his!
Faith that overcomes every obstacle in the way. Faith, stronger than love for my wife and children. Faith that propels me into letting go of all earthly things, trusting you alone. Keep me like Jacob, bold in faith, so I may struggle with men and God, and overcome!
Give me heavenly wisdom for I am weak and make many mistakes. Burn
the imprint of your Spirit onto my flesh, and strike me with many blows,
if necessary, so my flesh will not get in the way.
With blood that cost you unspeakably much, you bought us. Let us now die to ourselves so we may live a new life with you—made like you in every way.
anonymous Anabaptist writer, 16’th Century, Europe