Alas! The candle’s wick is cold
Where love once burned so warm and deep,
Where passion flared and now has died,
Where Jeremiah comes to weep.
Familiar face, familiar knees,
To altar calls he weekly deigns
And mumbles sinners’ prayers anew,
Yet always leaves with ball and chains.
Oh, where did all the power fly
To break the bonds of sin and pride?
Did Jesus say the free indeed
Are those in whom the Son abides?
Yet light is spurned behind the veil,
While men shun gold and value dust.
They turn to Band-Aid cures for death
While surgeon scalpels spoil in rust.
The man in fetters sleeps with slaves
Believing rags are robes of white,
That fools are given crowns of gold
And sinners please the Lord of Light.
Alas! The Lord will slay these men,
No matter what their words embrace,
For Christ spews out the lukewarm hearts
The so-called sinners saved by grace.
Yet hope remains for candle flames,
The lights in darkest times revealed
In works of love and sacrifice,
Their gifts to God and man unsealed.
They tell the tale of Christ’s pure love
Emmanuel and His new birth,
“He comes with light and sword in hand
To heal the sons of men on earth.
“Embrace the sword of Christmas morn,
Our gift from God that cuts and mends
A heart of sin to purge the flesh,
Salvation’s light that never ends.”
And now the flame is burning new
In hearts who love the Shepherd’s staff,
Where passion burns and lives again
And Jeremiah comes to laugh.