A stone I surely am! but of what kind?
Ah! let this thought most deeply grip the mind,
For there are stones and stones which, as you see,
Do neither in their size nor shape agree.
Am I a living stone? Or am I dead?
Have I been blasted from dark nature's bed?
Or do I still within my rock-home lie?—
Unreached by God's great power—dead and to die.
If saved— a stepping-stone I may become
To raise a brother from some sinful slum;
And watch him rise to heights of moral worth,
And claim an honoured place, through grace, on earth.
Or I may be a heartless stumbling-stone!
O'er which my fellow falls and breaks a bone;
And have him crippled for the rest of life,
Unfit to stand erect amid the strife.
Or—awful thought!—I may a millstone be
And drown my brother deep in sin's dark sea,
Then watch the bubbles rise, which indicate;
How absolutely helpless was his fate.
Or I may be a grindstone hard and round,
Upon whose wheel some fellow may be ground:
A lord of sweated labour—what reck I
Should fellow-beings near me sink and die?
Yea, I may even be a rolling-stone
And to a life of wandering be prone;
But all such stones are useless as a whole,
They simply oscillate from pole to pole.
Not only are we stones; but stones we cast—
The Stone of judgment at a brother's past;
Ye who are sinless—only ye alone—
Possess the right to cast the Judgment-stone.—Tom Baird
(1 Pet. 2. 5, 8; Matt. 18. 6; John 8. 7)