Christ My Song - 138
Searcher of the human heart - Self-examination in the sight of God (Carl Johann Philipp Spitta/Richard Massie/
Johannes Thomas Rüegg)
Self-examination in the sight of God.
1. Searcher of the human heart,
probing deep its inmost part!
Vain were all attempts at screening
from thy sight its hidden meaning;
thine all-seeing eye doth scan
every thought of sinful man.
2. Fountain of eternal light!
naught is hidden from thy sight;
ere the tongue can make confession,
known to thee is my transgression;
better far thou know'st than I
all my heart's iniquity.
3. Holy One! thy steadfast gaze
every thought of man surveys;
vainly would he seek to hide it!
Oh! what mortal could abide it,
shouldst thou into judgment bring
every secret hidden thing?
4. Placed before the searching glance
of thy shining countenance,
stripped of all the artifices
whereby man the truth disguises,
I appear in my true light,
all I am is in thy sight.
5. Thou who lovest to impart
comfort to the broken heart,
thou with whom is plenteous pardon,
rest and ease from every burden,
speak the word from thy high throne,
"Be thou comforted, my son!"
6. Clothe me with the wedding-dress
of thy perfect righteousness,
with thy spotless robe array me,
that it may no more dismay me,
when thine eye shall turn on me
its all-searching scrutiny.
7. Give the good for which I pray,
take all hurtful things away,
heal and keep my soul from evil,
from the world, the flesh, the devil,
that it may, made clean by thee,
in thy sight well-pleasing be.
8. Make me like a little child,
humble, teachable, and mild;
let me "Abba, Father!" crying,
with a childlike trust relying
on thy love, abide thy look,
blameless, and without rebuke.
Richard Massie, Lyra Domestica II, 1863, 30-31.
Translated from the German Herzenskündiger - Selbstprüfung vor dem Angesichte Gottes
of Carl Johann Philipp Spitta.