The Past is dark with sin and shame,
The Future dim with doubt and fear;
But, Father, yet we praise Thy name,
Whose guardian love is always near.
For man has striven, ages long,
With faltering steps to come to Thee,
And in each purpose high and strong
The influence of Thy grace could see.
He could not breathe an earnest prayer,
But Thou wast kinder than he dreamed,
As age by age brought hopes more fair,
And nearer still Thy kingdom seemed.
But never rose within his breast
A trust so calm and deep as now;—
Shall not the weary find a rest?
Father, Preserver, answer Thou!
’Tis dark around, ’tis dark above,
But through the shadow streams the sun;
We cannot doubt Thy certain love;
And Man’s true aim shall yet be won!