“I love the Lord,” is still the strain
This heart delights to sing:
But I reply—your thoughts are vain,
Perhaps 'tis no such thing.
Before the power of love divine
Creation fades away;
Till only God is seen to shine
In all that we survey.
In gulfs of awful night we find
The God of our desires;
'Tis there he stamps the yielding mind,
And doubles all its fires.
Flames of encircling love invest,
And pierce it sweetly through;
'Tis filled with sacred joy, yet pressed
With sacred sorrow too.
Ah love! my heart is in the right—
Amidst a thousand woes,
To thee, its ever new delight,
And all its peace it owes.
Fresh causes of distress occur
Where'er I look or move;
The comforts I to all prefer
Are solitude and love.
Nor exile I nor prison fear;
Love makes my courage great;
I find a Saviour every where,
His grace in every state.
Nor castle walls, nor dungeons deep,
Exclude his quickening beams;
There I can sit, and sing, and weep,
And dwell on heavenly themes.
There sorrow, for his sake, is found
A joy beyond compare;
There no presumptuous thoughts abound,
No pride can enter there.
A Saviour doubles all my joys,
And sweetens all my pains,
His strength in my defence employs,
Consoles me and sustains.
I fear no ill, resent no wrong;
Nor feel a passion move,
When malice whets her slanderous tongue;
Such patience is in love.
Translations from the French of Madame de la Mothe Guion