The Kite and Its String

A lesson for Christians who wish to do their own thing in this poem by John Newton written so long ago.  John Newton also wrote the beautiful hymn Amazing Grace.

The Kite and Its String

Once on a time a paper kite
Was mounted to a wondrous height,
Where, giddy with its elevation,
It thus expressed self-admiration:

“See how the crowds of gazing people
Admire my flight above the steeple;
How would they wonder if they knew
All that a kite like me can do!

Were I but free, I’d take a flight,
And pierce the clouds beyond their sight;
But, ah! like a poor prisoner bound,
My string confines me near the ground.

I’d brave the eagle’s towering wing,
Might I but fly without a string”
It tugged and pulled, while thus it spoke,
To break the string – at last it broke.

Deprived at once of all its stay,
In vain it tried to soar away:
Unable its own weight to bear,
It fluttered downward through the air.

Unable its own course to guide,
The wind soon plunged it to the tide.
Ah, foolish kite, you had no wing:
How could you fly without a string?

My heart replied, “O Lord, I see
How much this kite resembles me
Forgetful that by Thee I stand,
Impatient of Thy ruling hand;
How oft I’ve wished to break the lines
Thy wisdom for my lot assigns?

How oft indulged a vain desire
For something more, or something higher,
And, but for grace and love divine,
A fall thus dreadful had been mine.

John Newton

Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.  In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.


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2 thoughts on “The Kite and Its String

  1. Ginny May 12, 2017 at 8:16 am Reply

    My testimony, “Former Hippie Finds True Freedom,” revolves around this kite concept. A woman who heard me speak this week alerted me to this poem. I had never seen it before. Thank you so much for posting it. I’m adding a copy to my notebook.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Vicki May 12, 2017 at 3:55 pm Reply

      you are very welcome, I’m happy that you found it here.


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