The Beggar

Encouraged by thy word
Of promise to the poor;
Behold, a beggar, Lord,
Waits at thy mercy's door!
No hand, no heart, O Lord, but thine,
Can help or pity wants like mine.

The beggar's usual plea
Relief from men to gain,
If offered unto thee,
I know thou would'st disdain:
And pleas which move thy gracious ear,
Are such as men would scorn to hear.

I have no right to say
That though I now am poor,
Yet once there was a day
When I possessed more:
Thou know'st that from my very birth,
I've been the poorest wretch on earth.

Nor can I dare profess,
As beggars often do,
Though great is my distress,
My wants have been but few:
If thou shouldst leave my soul to starve,
It would be what I well deserve.

'Twere folly to pretend
I never begged before;
Or if thou now befriend,
I'll trouble thee no more:
Thou often hast relieved my pain,
And often I must come again.

Though crumbs are much too good
For such a dog as I;
No less than children's food
My soul can satisfy:
O do not frown and bid me go,
I must have all thou canst bestow.

by John Newton

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