Hymn 22. Meditating on Creation and Providence

Lord, when my raptur’d thought surveys

Creation’s beauties o’er,

All nature joins to teach thy praise,

And bid my soul adore.

Where’er I turn my gazing eyes,

Thy radiant footsteps shine;

Then thousand pleasing wonders rise,

And speak their source divine.

The living tribes of countless forms,

In earth and sea and air;

The meanest flies, the smallest worms,

Almighty power declare.

All rose to life at thy command,

And wait their daily food

From thy paternal, bounteous hand,

Exhaustless spring of good!

The meads, array’d in smiling green,

With wholsome herbage crown’d;

The fields with corn, a richer scene,

Spread thy full bounties round.

The fruitful tree, the blooming flower,

In varied charms appear;

Their varied charms display thy power,

Thy goodness all declare.

The sun’s productive, quickening beams

The growing verdure spread;

Refreshing rains and cooling streams

His gentle influence aid.

The moon and stars his absent light

Supply with borrow’d rays,

And deck the sable veil of night,

And speak their Maker’s praise.

Thy wisdom, power and goodness, Lord,

In all thy works appear;

And O let man thy praise record;

Man, thy distinguish’d care.

From thee the breath of life he drew;

That breath thy power maintains;

Thy tender mercy, ever new,

His brittle frame sustains.

Yet nobler favours claim his praise,

Of reason’s light possest;

By revelation’s brighter rays

Still more divinely blest.

Thy Providence, his constant guard

When threatening woes impend,

Or will th’impending dangers ward,

Or timely succours lend.

On me that Providence has shone

With gentle smiling rays;

O let my lips and life make known

Thy goodness, and thy praise.

All bounteous Lord, thy grace impart;

O teach me to improve

Thy gifts with ever grateful heart,

And crown them with thy love.

Collection of Hymns Adapted to Public Worship, no. 22 (stanzas 1-3, 9-13); Poems, 1780, vol. 1, pp. 4-6; also MS, Steele Collection, Angus Library, Regents Park College, STE 3/1/1 no. 3; also Nonconformist Women Writers, vol. 1, pp. 33-35.