"Once to every man and nation/Comes the moment to decide,
In the strife of truth with falsehood/For the good or evil side ;
Some great cause, God's new Messiah/Offering each the bloom or blight,
And the choice goes on forever/'Twixt that darkness and the light.
Though the cause of evil prosper/Yet 'tis truth alone is strong ;
Truth forever on the scaffold/Wrong forever on the throne, --
Yet that scaffold sways the future/And, behind the dim unknown,
Standeth God within the shadow/Keeping watch above his own.
Then to side with truth is noble/When we share her wretched crust,
Ere her cause bring fame and profit/And 'tis prosperous to be just ;
Then it is the brave man chooses/While the coward stands aside
And the multitude make virtue/Of the faith they had denied.
Count me oe'er earth's chosen heroes ;/They were souls that stood alone,
Stood serene, and down the future/Saw the golden beam incline
To the side of perfect justice/Mastered by their faith divine,
By one man's plain truth to manhood/And to God's supreme design.
By the light of burning martyrs/Jesus' bleeding feet I track,
Toiling up new Calvaries ever/With the Cross that turns not back.
New occasions teach new duties. Time makes ancient good uncouth.
They must upward still, and onward/Who would keep abreast of truth.
Was the Mayflower launched by cowards/Steered by men behind their time ?
Turned those tracks toward Past or Future/That make Plymouth Rock sublime ?
Lo, before us gleam truth's beacons ; We ourselves must Pilgrims be,
Launch our Mayflower and steer boldly/Through the desperate winter sea."
James Russell Lowell, 1844
I like the idea of being a Pilgrim. And... in a strange way, I AM a Pilgrim : I picked up and "sailed" the ocean in the opposite direction... Looking toward the past ? Maybe. There is NO future without the past... And while I don't believe in any ABSOLUTE truth, I do believe that there is... the TRUTH of the moment, of the instant, of the meeting of two minds, if you will.
Oddly enough, perhaps only the Jews dimly perceived the ultimate trap : that God himself could become... an idol. Strange, isn't it ?
That's how I've managed to reconcile my "Christianity" with our current context, in the lines of "keeping abreast with truth".