1 Now from the altar of my heart
let incense flames arise;
assist me, Lord, to offer up
my evening sacrifice.
2 Awake, my love; awake, my joy;
awake, my heart and tongue!
Sleep not: when mercies loudly call,
break forth into a song.
3 This day my God was sun and shield,
my keeper and my guide.
His care was on my frailty shown,
his mercies multiplied.
4 New time, new favour, and new joys
do a new song require;
till I shall praise thee as I would,
accept my heart's desire.
Source: Common Praise (1998) #22
"Man's life's a book of history; The leaves thereof are days; The letters, mercies closely join'd; The title is Thy praise,"is usually thought to have suggested Dr. Franklin's well-known epitaph upon himself, wherein he compares his body to "the cover of an old book, the contents torn out, and stripped of its lettering and gilding." The whole hymn is sometimes quoted, and not without reason, as Mason's finest production. --John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)