starry nightI wander through the stilly night, when solitude is everywhere.  Alone beneath the starry light and yet I know that God is there.  I kneel upon the grass and pray, an answer comes without a voice.  It takes my burden all away and makes my aching heart rejoice.

When I am filled with strong desire, and ask a boon of Him,  I see no miracle of living fire but what I ask flows into me.  And when the tempest rages high I feel no arm around me thrust,  But every storm goes rolling by when I repose in him by trust.

It matters not what may befall, what threatening hand hangs over me,  He is my rampart through it all, my refuge from mine enemy.   Come unto him all ye deprest; ye erring souls whose eyes are dim,  Ye weary ones who long for rest, come unto him! Come unto him!

This hymn  was among the choir selections,  p. 294 in the 1948 hymnal.  It appears in todays hymnal as Come unto Him p. 120.

I first learned and sang this hymn as a boy singing in branch and stake choirs.  It was a favorite of mine, I recognized something special in it.  It has taken many years to come to understand what drew me to this hymn.  For my eyes were “dim” for a while.

Several have come to me recently with a similar story.  A friend struggles with addiction, he had made good progress for a while, but became disillusioned when the addiction was not taken from them.  When the urges continued to come, they were disappointed in what they thought the Savior was going to do for them.

Paul taught us when he confessed his own “thorns in his flesh.”  He asked for them to be removed, but they were not.  He flourished spiritually in spite of them.  2 Corinthians 12: 7-10:

And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revalations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh,the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.

For this thing I besouhgt the Lord thrice, that it might depart me.

And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strngthis made perfect in weakness.  Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

Therfore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak I am strong.

Many of us fail to understand Paul’s logic and we build an expectation when we begin recovery that the result will be the removal of our thorn.  It will probably not be so.  But we can learn to live as Paul did, around our human urges and old addictive yearnings.  They bring us to our humility.  In our humility we find the Savior.  It is ok.

Funny that we would take it upon ourselves to define recovery when it is He who gives us healing.  Let us find it on His terms not our own!

In the words of the hymn:  When I am filled with strong desire, and ask a boon of Him,  I see no miracle of living fire but what I ask flows into me.  And when the tempest rages high I feel no arm around me thrust,  But every storm goes rolling by when I repose in him by trust. The storm goes rolling by.  There may not be miraculous deliverance, but the storm goes rolling by.