How long, Lord, in forgetfulness
And darkness wilt Thou leave me?
How long will sorrow on me press
And deep heart-anguish grieve me?
Wilt Thou Thy face, Lord, utterly
Turn from me? wilt ne’er look on me
In grace and in compassion?
How long shall I, thy stricken child,
Bereft of soul-rest languish?
How long shall storm and wind so wild,
Fill heart with fear and anguish?
How long shall my proud enemy,
Who only meaneth ill to me,
Exult o’er me in triumph?
Ah! look on me, my Shield and Lord!
Down from Thy holy heaven,
And hear now my complaining word,
My pray’r from heart grief-riven.
Give to mine eyes, Lord, pow’r and might,
And do not let death’s gloomy night
So speedily o’ertake me.
For then, Lord, ev’ry enemy
Would never cease to glory,
And were I prostrate utterly,
Would ever triumph o’er me.
“There lieth he,” they’d cry in joy,
“Who caus’d us evermore annoy,
He’s prostrate and ne’er riseth.”
I know them, and I know fall well
The wickedness they’re planning,
Their hearts with ev’ry evil swell,
No good them e’er restraining.
But Thou, the faithful One, Lord, art,
And those who choose Thee for their part,
Thou nevermore forsakest.
My soul doth calmly trust in Thee,
Thou true to me remainest,
Of malice and of subtlety
The course, with pow’r restrainest.
This makes my heart with joy o’erflow,
That willingly dost Thou bestow
Salvation on the trusting.
O Lord! for aye I’ll trust in Thee,
Thou’rt my sole joy for ever;
Thou doest well, protectest me,
From sorrow dost deliver.
And therefore I my whole life long,
Will sing Thee oft a gladsome song
Of praise and of thanksgiving.
Paul Gerhardt’s Spiritual Songs, 1867
|First Line:||How long, Lord, in forgetfulness|
|Title:||The 13th Psalm of David|
|German Title:||Wie lang, O Herr, wie lange soll|
|Translator:||J. Kelly (1867)|
|Copyright:||This text in in the public domain in the United States because it was published before 1923.|