So far in 2022, 11 million people from 200-plus countries around the world have benefitted from the Hymnary website! Thank you to all who use and all who support it with gifts of time, talent and treasure. If you feel moved to support our work today with a gift of any amount and a word of encouragement, we would be grateful. You can donate online at our secure giving site. Or, if you'd like to make a gift by check, please send it to:, Calvin University, 3201 Burton Street SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49546. May the hope, love, joy and peace of Advent be yours this day and always.

Dixi custodiam

I said I will look to my ways, For fear I should go wrong

Author: John Hopkins
Published in 2 hymnals

Representative Text

1 I said, "I will look to my ways,
for fear I should go wrong;
I will take heed all times that I
offend not with my tongue:

2 "As with a bit I will keep fast
my mouth with force and might,
Not once to whisper all the while
the wicked are in sight."

3 I held my tongue, and spake no word,
but kept me close and still;
Yea, from good talk I did refrain,
but sore against my will.

4 My heart grew hot within my breast
with musing, thought and doubt,
Which did increase and stir the fire,
at last these words burst out:

5 Lord, number out my life and days,
which yet I have not past;
So that I may be certified
how long my life shall last.

6 For thou hast pointed out my life,
in length much like a span:
My age is nothing unto thee;
so vain is every man!

7 Man walketh like a shade, and doth
in vain himself employ,
In getting goods, and cannot tell
who shall the same enjoy.

8 Therefore, O Lord, what wait I for?
What help do I desire?
Truly my hope is e'en in thee,
I nothing else require.

The Second Part

9 From all the sins that I have done,
Lord, quit me out of hand,
And make me not a scorn to fools,
that nothing understand.

10 I was so dumb, that to complain
no trouble could me move,
Because I knew it was thy work
my patience for to prove.

11 Lord, take from me thy scourge and plague,
I cannot them withstand,
I faint and pine away for fear
of thy most heavy hand.

12 When thou for sin dost man rebuke,
he waxeth pale and wan,
As doth a cloth that moths have fret;
so vain a thing is man!

13 Lord, hear my suit, and give good heed,
regard my tears that fall;
I sojourn like a stranger here,
as did my fathers all.

14 O spare a little, give me space
my strength for to restore,
Before I go away from hence,
and shall be seen no more.

Author: John Hopkins

(no biographical information available about John Hopkins.) Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: I said I will look to my ways, For fear I should go wrong
Title: Dixi custodiam
Author: John Hopkins
Language: English
Publication Date: 1812
Copyright: This text in in the public domain in the United States because it was published before 1923.



Instances (1 - 2 of 2)
TextPage Scan

The Whole Book of Psalms #XXXIX

TextPage Scan

The Whole Booke of Psalmes #19b

Suggestions or corrections? Contact us


It looks like you are using an ad-blocker. Ad revenue helps keep us running. Please consider white-listing or subscribing to eliminate ads entirely and help support