Oh, that we loved thee purely!
Loved thee, our God, our all;
With a love that is large and joyous,
Not love that is cramped and small!
Oh, that the best affections
Of hearts that are warm and true,
Were lavished in richest treasure
Where only such wealth is due!
Oh, that our souls were gardens
Of flowers most sweet and rare,
All watered with tears of penance,
And nourished with faithful prayer!
Oh, that our wills so feeble
Grew strong with the strength of love,
Till they broke earth's fetters, and changed them
For links that are forged above!
Oh, that the pride which spurs us
To things unworthy and base
Would soar on a grander pinion,
And strive in a nobler race!
Oh, that our sensitive spirits,
That shrink from the shadow of shame,
Were callous to pain that is selfish,
And keen for their Master's fame!
Oh, that the grief that moves us,
Were grief for God's love reviled;
For wounds that the heart of a father
Has borne from the hand of a child!
Oh, that our poor complainings
Were changed into grateful lays;
That the sighs of a heart in sadness
Were fragrant with perfume of praise!
Lord help our earnest desires,
And give them a deeper root;
Let them grow into flower and blossom,
And ripen to glorious fruit!