[Retire my Soul, exert thy pow’rs]

Retire my Soul, exert thy pow’rs

And view thy Self within;

Search every winding of my heart

And find out every Sin.

In vain, alas, in vain I strive,

I’m lost a thousand ways;

In vain I try my Self t’explore,

I’m lost in deep amaze.

My num’rous sins have form’d a mist,

My heart is hard as stone;

Great God of Nature and of Grace,

It is thy work alone.

Thou sun of righteousness arise

And drive these shades away;

Arise with healing in thy wings

And turn my night to day.

Lord soften this relentless rock,

Dissolve this heart of stone;

Dispel these thick and gloomy clouds,

For ’tis thy work alone.

Text: Steele Collection, 2/2/1; see also Whelan, Nonconformist Women Writers, vol. 8, p. 23 .