"Feed my sheep"

Peter , I felt your ecstasy
That day you met beside the sea.
That mighty urge I too have known
To rise and follow him alone;
Mine the quick faith to walk the wave.
And mine the cry, "O Master, save."

What joy and faith filled you and me
That day he made the blind to see!
But mine, like yours, the fear and doubt
That failed to cast the demon out.
We both have felt self-will and pride
Before the touch of Love subside.

I too slept on the night that he
Suffered alone in agony.
Too late I raised the impetuous sword
Against the betrayers of my Lord.
And stealing from his sorrowing side
Denied, denied, and thrice denied.

Ah, Peter, Peter, I have known
Each fault and impulse as my own.
Have drunk the dregs of bitter blame
And felt the searing touch of shame.
Yet count it well if from my night
I rise to see with your clear sight.

To say, "Thou art the Christ, the Son
Of the undying, holy One!"
To hear, "Thou art the rock, on thee
I build my Church!" Or if to me
Comes understanding rich and deep
To do his bidding, "Feed my sheep."

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Are We Good Samaritans?
February 8, 1947

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