1 FATHER of lights, from whom proceeds
Whate'er thy every creature needs,
Whose goodness, providently nigh,
Heeds the young ravens when they cry,
To thee I look; my heart prepare,
Suggest, and hearken to my prayer.
2 Since by thy light myself I see
Naked, and poor, and void of thee,
Thy eyes must all my thoughts survey,
Preventing what my lips would say;
Thou seest my wants, for help they call,
And ere I speak thou know'st them all.
3 Thou know'st the baseness of my mind,
Wayward, and impotent, and blind;
Thou know'st how unsubdued my will,
Averse from good and prone to ill;
Thou know'st now wide my passions rove,
Nor checked by fear, nor charmed by love!
4 Fain would I know, as known by thee,
And feel the indigence I see;
Fain would I all my vileness own,
And deep beneath the burden groan;
Abhor the pride that lurks within,
Detest and loathe myself and sin.
5 Ah! give me, Lord, myself to feel,
My total misery reveal;
Ah! give me, Lord (I still would say)
A heart to mourn, a heart to pray;
My business this, my only care,
My life, my every breath, be prayer.