Tuesday, 12 April 2011

The Prayer of Charles Wesley,

This relatively unknown hymn is really the prayer of an evangelist and through its words touches the deepest recesses of an evangelist's innermost spirit.It might also be viewed as a commentary or exposition of the words from that most famous of prayers: 'Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven' as regards humankind hearing and heeding the message of gospel grace.As with many of Wesley's hymns it is full of Biblical imagery, be it from Isaiah, the gospels or the apostle Paul.We could do much worse than make it our own.

Thou, Jesus, Thou my breast inspire,
And touch my lips with hallowed fire,
And loose a stammering infant's tongue;
Prepare the vessel of Thy grace,
Adorn me with the robes of praise,
And mercy shall be all my song.
Mercy for all who know not God,
Mercy for all in Jesu's blood,
Mercy, that earth and heaven transcends;
Love, that o'erwhelms the saints in light,
The length, and breadth, and depth, and height
O love divine which never ends!

A faithful witness of Thy grace,
Well may I fill the alloted space,
And answer all Thy great design;
Walk in the works by Thee prepared;
And find annexed the vast reward,
The crown of righteousness divine.
When I have lived to Thee alone,
Pronounce the welcome word: Well done!
And let me take my place above,
Enter into my Master's joy,
And all eternity employ
In praise, and ecstasy, and love.

Charles Wesley (1707-1788)

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