1 Tossed upon life's raging billow.
Sweet it is, O Lord, to know
Thou didst press a sailor's pillow.
Thou canst feel a sailor's woe;
Never slumb'ring, never sleeping.
Tho' the night be dark and drear,
Thou the faithful watch art keeping;
"All is well," thy constant cheer.
2 Thou my heart the hope will cherish,
While to thee I lift mine eye,
Thou wilt save me o'er I perish,
Thou wilt hear the sailor's cry;
And the mast and sail be riven,
Soon life's voyage will be o'er;
Safely moored in heav'n's wide haven,
Storm and temptest vex no more.
Source: Christ in Song: for all religious services nearly one thousand best gospel hymns, new and old with responsive scripture readings (Rev. and Enl.) #733
Tossed upon life's raging billow. Sailor's Hymn. Appeared in the Christian Lyre, 1830; in the Seamen's Devotional Assistant the same year, and in Dr. Bethune's Lays, 1847, p. 168, in 3 stanzas of 8 1ines. It "is said to have been the Author's first and favourite hymn, having been written when he was on a voyage to the West Indies, for the benefit of his health, in the year 1825" (Lyra Sacra Americana p. 297). It is a "Sailor's Hymn;" as such it was given in Lyra Sacra Americana, and thence passed into The Hymnary, 1872, and other English collections.
-John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)