The homely words how often read!
How seldom fully known!
“Which father of you, asked for bread,
Would give his son a stone?”

How oft has bitter tear been shed,
And heaved how many a groan,
Because thou wouldst not give for bread
The thing that was a stone!

How oft the child thou wouldst have fed,
Thy gift away has thrown!
He prayed, thou heard’st, and gav’st the bread:
He cried, “It is a stone!”

Lord, if I ask in doubt and dread
Lest I be left to moan,
Am I not he who, asked for bread,
Would give his son a stone?

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