No strength of nature can suffice
      To serve the Lord aright:

No strength of nature can suffice
      To serve the Lord aright:
And what she has she misapplies,
      For want of clearer light.

How long beneath the law I lay
      In bondage and distress!
I toil’d the precept to obey,
      But toil’d without success.

Then, to abstain from outward sin
      Was more than I could do;
Now, if I feel its power within,
      I feel I hate it too.

Then, all my servile works were done
      A righteousness to raise;
Now, freely chosen in the Son,
      I freely choose his ways.

"What shall I do," was then the word,
      "That I may worthier grow?"
"What shall I render to the Lord?"
      Is my inquiry now.

To see the law by Christ fulfill’d,
      And hear his pardoning voice,
Changes a slave into a child,
      And duty into choice.

~ William Cowper

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