1 Happy soul, that free from harms,
Rests within his Shepherd’s arms!
Who his quiet shall molest?
Who shall violate his rest?
Jesus doth his spirit bear;
Jesus takes his ev'ry care;
He who found the wand'ring sheep,
Jesus still delights to keep.
2 O that I might so believe,
Stedfastly to Jesus cleave;
On his holy love rely,
Smile at the destroyer nigh;
Free from sin and servile fear,
Have my Jesus ever near;
All his care rejoice to prove,
All his paradise of love.
3 Jesus, seek thy wand'ring sheep,
Bring me back, and lead, and keep;
Take on thee my ev'ry care;
Bear me on thy bosom bear.
Let me know my Shepherd’s voice,
More and more in thee rejoice;
More and more of thee receive,
Ever in thy spirit live:
4 Live, till all thy life I know,
Perfect through my Lord below;
Gladly then from earth remove,
Gather'd to the fold above;
O that I at last may stand
With the sheep at thy right hand;
Take the crown so freely giv'n;
Enter in by thee to heav'n.
Charles Wesley, M.A. was the great hymn-writer of the Wesley family, perhaps, taking quantity and quality into consideration, the great hymn-writer of all ages. Charles Wesley was the youngest son and 18th child of Samuel and Susanna Wesley, and was born at Epworth Rectory, Dec. 18, 1707. In 1716 he went to Westminster School, being provided with a home and board by his elder brother Samuel, then usher at the school, until 1721, when he was elected King's Scholar, and as such received his board and education free. In 1726 Charles Wesley was elected to a Westminster studentship at Christ Church, Oxford, where he took his degree in 1729, and became a college tutor. In the early part of the same year his religious impressions were much deepene… Go to person page >
Happy [saint] soul that free from harms. C. Wesley. [Prayer to the Good Shepherd.] Appeared in Hymns & Sacred Poems, 1749, No. 106, in 10 stanzas of 4 lines, as No. 4 of "Hymns for those that wait for full Redemption." (Poetical Works, 1868-72, vol. v. p. 293) In the Wesleyan Hymn Book, 1780, it was given with the omission of stanzas ii., iii., and repeated in the revised edition, 1875, No. 13. In Mercer's Church Psalter & Hymn Book, 1856 and 1872, it reads, "Happy saint that free from harms"; and in the Baptist Psalms & Hymns, 1858, No. 550, stanzas vi.-x. are given as, "Jesus, seek Thy wandering sheep."
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)