In this poem, we are reminded of the easy faith of childhood, the tried and tested faith of our adult years, and the need for holy strength that we might have believing hearts.
The Road to Bethlehem
Watson Kirkconnell (1895-1977)
Above the road to Bethlehem
When I was very young,
A twilight sky of tender blue
With golden stars was hung;
And kneeling at the stable door,
I happily confessed
My humble worship of the Child
Who slept at Mary’s breast.
But now the road to Bethlehem
Seems cold and steep and far;
It wanders through a wilderness
Unlit by any star.
The earth I tread is frozen hard;
The winter chills my breath;
On either hand rise evil shapes
From valleys dark with death.
The air is tense with moans of pain
And cries of bitter hate,
Where bloodstained hills and shattered stones
Lie black and desolate.
How can the sacred heart of God
Heal all this guilt and grief?
Lord, I believe. And yet, this night,
Help Thou mine unbelief!
Purge Thou mine eyes, that they may see
Thy Star across the gloom!
Touch Thou my heart, that I may lose
These agonies of doom!
Now in the darkness guide my feet,
Give holy strength to them
To walk with childlike faith once more
The road to Bethlehem.