Scripture Verse

Lord, make me to know…the measure of my days…that I may know how frail I am. Psalm 39:4


Samuel S. Wesley (1810–1876)

Words: Anne Steele, Po­ems on Sub­jects Chief­ly De­vo­tion­al 1760. The orig­in­al was the 13-stan­za po­em, When I Re­solved to Watch My Thoughts. This ver­sion is a cen­to that first ap­peared in A Se­lect­ion of Hymns from the Best Au­thors, by John Rip­pon (Lon­don: 1787).

Music: Wins­cott Sam­uel S. Wes­ley, 1872 (🔊 pdf nwc).

If you know where to get a good pic­ture of Steele (head & shoul­ders, at least 200×300 pix­els),


Almighty Mak­er of my frame!
Teach me the mea­sure of my days,
Teach me to know how frail I am,
And spend the rem­nant in Thy praise.

My days are short­er than a span,
A lit­tle point my life ap­pears;
How frail at best is dy­ing man!
How vain are all his hopes and fears!

Vain his am­bi­tion, noise and show;
Vain are the cares which rack his mind;
He heaps up trea­sures mixed with woe,
And dies and leaves them all be­hind.

O be a nob­ler por­tion mine!
My God, I bow be­fore Thy throne;
Earth’s fleet­ing trea­sures I re­sign,
And fix my hope on Thee alone.