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Psalm 139:23

“Try me, O God, and seek the ground of my heart.”2727The Prayer-Book version is quoted here, as often elsewhere by the Wesleys. In the first edition the title prefixed to this piece was, “Blessed are they that mourn” (Matt. 5:4.). In the second and all subsequent editions it stands as above.

Jesu! my great High-Priest above,

My Friend before the throne of Love!

If now for me prevails Thy prayer,

If now I find Thee pleading there;

If Thou the secret wish convey,

And sweetly prompt my heart to pray;

Hear, and my weak petitions join,

Almighty Advocate, to Thine!

Fain would I know my utmost ill,

And groan my nature’s weight to feel;

To feel the clouds that round me roll,

The night that hangs upon my soul,

The darkness of my carnal mind,

My will perverse, my passions blind,

Scatter’d o’er all the earth abroad,

Immeasurably far from God.

Jesu! my heart’s desire obtain,

My earnest suit present and gain,

My fulness of corruption show,

The knowledge of myself bestow;

A deeper displacence at sin,

A sharper sense of hell within,

A stronger struggling to get free,

A keener appetite for Thee.

For Thee my spirit often pants,

Yet often in pursuing faints;

Drooping it soon neglects to aspire,

To fan the ever-dying fire:

No more Thy glory’s skirts are seen,

The world, the creature steals between;

Heavenward no more my wishes move,

And I forget that Thou art Love.

O sovereign Love, to Thee I cry;

Give me Thyself, or else I die.

Save me from death, from hell set free;

Death, hell, are but the want of Thee.

Quicken’d by Thy imparted flame,

Saved, when possest of Thee, I am;

My life, my only heaven, Thou art:

And, lo! I feel Thee in my heart!2828In editions 2, 3, for “And, lo! I feel” we read, “When shall I feel?” and in editions 4 and 5, “O might I feel Thee in my heart.”

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