Hymn Story: Rock of Ages
How often does the weary soul toil on through the burden of the day without stopping to consider Him? Fellowship with He who ought to be our refuge, our joy, our strength often is relegated to the early morning hours or before bed at night. But what courage might we find if we would only turn our thoughts to him as we labour? Given below is one such example.
“A. W., in the American Messenger, furnishes the following:–
“ ‘Twas a sultry day in June. The scorching beams of the noonday sun came slanting through the broad uncurtained windows, falling directly on the operators and sewing-girls ranged along the room, making their heads throb and ache almost to bursting. Wearily the machines turned, and the tired eyes of the girls clanked now and then at the clock noting the moments as they dragged heavily by.
“The calls on the ice-cooler had been frequent that morning, and now at one o’clock the water was spent. One after another had gone to it, expecting to get a cooling drink, but had turned away disappointed. The merry song was hushed, the laughing jests were dropped, and tired hands toiled on, longing for the close of the day, that they might find rest and water.
“Suddenly in the deep hush, came the sweet, low voice of an operator, singing,
“Rock of ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in thee.”
One after another joined in, forgetting their burning thirst, until the whole fifty girls were singing. Grandly the closing stanza rang out,
“While I draw this fleeting breath,
when my heartstrings break in death,
See thee on thy judgement-throne,
No more sadness, no more weary looks or anxious glances towards the clock. Hymn after hymn was sung, and almost too soon came the six o’clock bell.”