1 Blest is the man whose heart expands
At melting pity's call,
And the rich blessings of whose hands
Like heavenly manna fall.
2 Mercy, descending from above,
In softest accents please;
Oh may each tender bosom move
When mercy intercedes.
3 Be ours the bliss in wisdom's way
To guide untutored youth,
And lead the mind that went astray
To virtue and to truth.
4 Children our kind protection claim,
And God will well approve,
When infants learn to lisp His name,
And their Creator love.
5 Delightful work! your souls to win,
And turn the rising race
From the deceitful paths of sin,
To seek redeeming grace.
6 Almighty God! thy influence shed
To aid this good design:
The honours of thy name be spread,
And all the glory thine.
Source: The Book of Worship #403
Blest is the man whose heart expands. J. Straphan. [For Sunday Schools.] First published in Rippon's Selection, 1787, No. 523, in 6 stanzas of 4 lines. The form in which it usually appears in 4 stanzas was included by Cotterill in his Selection, 1819, No. 218, where it is appointed to be sung "At a Sermon for Charity Schools." A cento from this hymn, "Blest work, the youthful mind to win," is composed of stanzas v., iv., iii., and vi. considerably altered. It is found in this form in Baldwin's Preston Set of Psalms & Hymns, 1831, No. 21, and has been frequently repeated in later collections. A second cento, beginning with an alteration of stanza iii., as “Blest is the work in wisdom's ways," has also come into use. In these varying forms this hymn has attained to an extensive circulation.
-- John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)