FATHER, I KNOW THAT ALL MY LIFE - Anna Letitia Waring Poems


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"My times are in Thy hand." -- Psalm XXXI.15

Father, I know that all my life
   Is portioned out for me,
And the changes that are sure to come,
   I do not fear to see;
But I ask Thee for a present mind
   Intent on pleasing Thee.

I ask Thee for a thoughtful love,
   Through constant watching wise,
To meet the glad with joyful smiles,
   And to wipe the weeping eyes;
And a heart at leisure from itself,
   To soothe and sympathise.

I would not have the restless will
   That hurries to and fro,
Seeking for some great thing to do
   Or secret thing to know;
I would be treated as a child,
   And guided where I go.

Wherever in the world I am,
   In whatsoe'er estate,
I have a fellowship with hearts
   To keep and cultivate;
And a work of lowly love to do
   For the Lord on whom I wait.

So I ask Thee for the daily strength,
   To none that ask denied,
And a mind to blend with outward life
   While keeping at Thy side;
Content to fill a little space,
   If Thou be glorified.

And if some things I do not ask,
   In my cup of blessing be,
I would have my spirit filled the more
   With grateful love to Thee --
More careful -- not to serve Thee much,
   But to please Thee perfectly.

There are briers besetting every path,
   That call for patient care;
There is a cross in every lot,
   And an earnest need for prayer;
But a lowly heart that leans on Thee
   Is happy anywhere.

In a service which Thy will appoints,
   There are no bonds for me,
For my inmost heart is taught "the truth"
   That makes Thy children "free;"
And a life of self-renouncing love
   Is a life of liberty.