1 Hear, Lord, the song of praise and prayer,
In Heav’n Thy dwelling place,
From infants, made Thy constant care,
[originally, …made the public care]
And taught to seek Thy face!
2 Thanks for Thy Word, and for Thy day,
And grant us, we implore,
Never to waste in sinful play,
Thy holy Sabbaths more.
3 Thanks that we hear—but, Oh, impart,
To each desires sincere,
That we may listen with our heart,
And learn, as well as hear.
4 For if vain thoughts our minds engage,
Of elder far than we:
What hope that at our heedless age,
Our minds shall e’er be free?
5 Much hope, if Thou our spirits take
Under Thy gracious sway,
Who canst make the wisest wiser make
And babes as wise as they.
6 Wisdom and bliss Thy Word bestows,
A sun that ne’er declines;
And be Thy mercies showered on those
Who placed us where it shines.
Source: The Cyber Hymnal #11011
“The following hymn, composed by the poet Cowper for the anniversary of the establishment of the Sunday Schools at Olney, and, perhaps, not ill calculated for general use on such anniversaries in other parishes, has never, I believe, appeared in print. If you agree with me in thinking the publication of it desirable, it is very much at your service. Its tendency is, certainly, the same with that of other productions of his pen. And its internal evidence, as to authorship, is so strong, that it is perhaps unnecessary for me to say I transcribe a copy sent by Mrs. Unwin, in her own handwriting, to her daughter, Mrs. Powley... E. Kilvington, Ossett, Aug. 16."The hymn is in 6 stanzas of 4 lines, the opening stanza being:—
"Hear, Lord, the songs of praise and prayer, In heaven, Thy dwelling-place, From children made the public care, And taught to seek Thy face."In the Leeds Sunday School Hymn Book, 1833, it is abbreviated to 3 stanzas, and in this form it is known to modern collections. One or two of the remaining stanzas might be added with advantage. --John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)