©2012 Susan Noyes Anderson
A grateful son knelt down to pray,
determined at the end of day
to bow himself beneath the rod
and consecrate his soul to God.
He offered up a willing heart
and asked for strength to do his part,
reviewing all that he had done
to honor Christ, the holy One.
At work, integrity he’d shown;
despite having to stand alone,
when faced with lies, he’d chosen truth,
obeyed the teachings of his youth.
Though others spoke in vulgar ways,
from his lips came no errant phrase.
He banished all unwholesome thought
and lived the lessons virtue taught.
Whenever evil raised its head,
he leaned on what the scriptures said,
embraced the gospel all the more,
and fervent testimony bore.
He honored parents, paid his debts,
shunned the vice of placing bets,
practiced thrift and moderation,
valued work and education.
His goal was clear: to do his best
and never shrink before the test.
Such stalwart strength few men have seen.
His heart was pure; his spirit clean.
And so that night, on bended knee,
he offered up an earnest plea.
“What lack I yet?” he humbly cried.
“In You, I would be justified.”
The answer filled him, warm and deep.
A great commandment you must keep:
To love My children as I do
and bless them, just as I bless you.
For you are brothers, one and all.
The strong shall rise; the weak shall fall.
The weak shall rise; the strong shall fail.
Divided, man cannot prevail.
Then lift each other through the night
and reach as one for heaven’s light.
The core of all you hold as true
is love, My love, revealed in you.
Forget yourself; embrace the poor.
Forsake the riches held in store.
Give all you own, and follow Me.
In service, will your treasure be.
The young man wept but turned away;
the final price, he would not pay.
“The young man saith unto him, All these things have I kept from my youth up: what lack I yet? Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me. But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions” (Matthew 19:20-22).