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Ach! treuer Gott, barmherzigs Herz



Ah! faithful God, compass’nate heart,

Whose goodness never endeth,

I know this bitter cross and smart

Thy hand it is that sendeth!

Yea, Lord, I know this burden great

Thou sendest not in wrath and hate,

But ’tis in love appointed.

That ever is Thy way all-wise,

Thy child in woe must languish,

Thou whom Thou lovest, dost chastise,

’Fore joy Thou sendest anguish,

Sink’st us to hell, in woe we lie,

And raisest us again on high,

Thus with us fares it always.

Thou ever leadest wondrously

Thy children dear who please Thee!

Would I have life? Then first must I

E’en down to death abase me.

In honour who’d be raised on high,

He self-abas’d on earth must lie

As worthless dust and ashes.

On earth, Lord, Thy belovèd Son

Such sorrow had to try Him;

Ere He could reach His glorious throne

Ill men must crucify Him.

He pass’d through trouble, need, and woe,

Nor shrunk He from death’s cruel blow,

To reach the joys of heaven.

Did then Thy good and holy Son

Himself for us deliver,

And I enslavèd, sinful one,

Shall I resist Thee ever?

Of patience aye the glass is He,

And who His face desires to see

Must in His footsteps follow.

How is it reason finds it hard,

The truth so oft rejecteth,

That Thou with favour dost regard

E’en while Thy hand afflicteth?

How long doth oft the cross remain,

How hardly can we love and pain

Then reconcile together.

God of the Church! when fails my pow’r,

Strength graciously then give me;

And grant that nought in trial’s hour

Of faith may e’er deprive me.

Uphold me by Thy might, O Lord,

Establish me then in Thy word,

From murmuring deliver!

When I am weak, be Thou my stay,

In faithfulness be near me,

That I continually may pray,

And call on Thee to hear me.

While yet a heart hopes and believes,

And still in pray’r unceasing lives,

Bold is it, and unvanquish’d.

In measure, Lord, apply the rod,

Lest I sink altogether;

Thou know’st how I can bear the load,

How life’s imperill’d ever,

For neither steel nor stone am I,

But sooner pass away and die,

E’en than a fleeting vapour.

Ah! Jesus, who did’st stoop so low,

Thy blood shed, life that giveth,

The bitter cross full well dost know,

And how the spirit grieveth

When cross and heavy woe combine,

So wilt Thou hear each cry of mine,

When bitterly complaining.

I know Thou feelest sympathy

When want and woe distress me,

That Thou with help wilt visit me,

And graciously wilt bless me.

Ah! strengthen Thou my feeble hand,

And lead my feet where I may stand

In safety—Come and save me!

Speak courage to my fainting heart,

With comfort, Lord, support me.

Of weary souls the Rest Thou art,

My Tow’r, where none can hurt me!

My Rock, where from the sun I hide,

My Tent, where safely I abide

When storms without are raging!

And as in love, while here I dwell,

Thou suff’ring hast decreed me,

Thy grace vouchsafe Thy child, Lord, still,

In Thy green pastures lead me;

That I in faith may patience gain,

Through patience rich reward attain,

When I’ve endur’d the trial.

Oh! Holy Ghost, of joy the Oil,

Whom God from Heaven giveth,

Refresh me, pour into my soul

What heart and flesh reviveth.

Of glory, Thou the Spirit art,

Know’st what in heav’n shall be my part

Of grace, joy, consolation!

How fair ’twill be, ah! let me gaze

Upon the life so glorious,

That Thou wilt give to those who pass

Through trials sore, victorious.

The earth with all its treasures fair

Can never with this life compare,

They pale and fade before it.

Thou’lt deal with me so graciously,

I’ll endless joy be tasting,

For trials known to Thee and me

Have glory everlasting.

Thou’lt wipe the tear-drop from mine eyes,

To exultation turn my sighs,

Lord! I believe it. Amen!

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