THE BRIDGE

I stood upon lifeís sinking sand,
And with an anxious eye I scanned
To find a way to Heavenís strand,
Which lay beyond an awesome sea;
I thought that surely there must be
A bridge across that gulf for me.

With haste I searched along lifeís shore;
One thing I sought, and nothing more:
A bridge to flee the wrath in store
For those whose hope in this world lies:
The pit, the fire, the hopeless cries,
The tortured soul that never dies.

I found a bridge of silver made;
On golden piers its form was laid,
And though with gems it was arrayed,
It fell far short of Heavenís side;
"Alas!" its builder sadly cried,
"No earthly wealth can bridge that tide!í

I found another built of deeds
And anchored down by righteous creeds;
"This one," thought I, "to Heaven leads."
But it, too, failed to span that seaó
The best that man can think or be
Shall never bridge eternity.

Another bridge was built of fame;
How pitiful appeared its frameó
No one can cross on world acclaim.
Another bridge was neatly planned
Upon the intellect of man;
When it was tried, it failed to stand.

My heart was filled with agony
To find no bridge across that sea
Until a stranger called to me;
"Iíve found a bridge!" he gladly cried;
"Its form was laid from Heavenís side
And spans that gulf so deep and wide.

Along a narrow path he led
My weary soul until ahead
I saw a wondrous sign that read,
"The Cross of Christóthe only span
That offers to repentant man
A way of reaching Heavenís strand."

I saw a bridge all stained with guilt;
A bridge no mortal hands had built,
And on its span Lambís blood was spilt;
Along its length a figure a lay:
A Son who cried, "I am the way!
The time of crossing is today
."

©2003 J. G. Braddock Sr.

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