The Daylight Disappeareth

The daylight disappeareth,
It fleeth, and night neareth,
Its gloom is spreading o’er us,
With slumber to o’erpower us
And all the wearied earth.
The working day now endeth,
My heart to Thee ascendeth,
For toil and rest who’st given
The morning and the even,-
In praise my heart bursts forth.

Break forth, my heart, in singing,
Praise to thy Maker bringing,
Who soul and body giveth,
More good than heart conceiveth,
Or tongue can ever tell;
No moment passeth over
That doth not much discover
Of goodness overflowing,
He’s aye on us bestowing,
Each hour doth show it well.

Just as the shepherd’s treasure,
The sheep in boundless pleasure
O’er greenest pastures wander,
Their guardian’s guidance under,
With free and fearless mind,
Themselves with flowers filling,
Their thirst at fresh springs stilling,
So me to-day hath guided,
With every good provided,
My Shepherd, good and kind.

God hath not me forsaken,
Though I sin’s course have taken,
Not fearing e’er to leave Him,
By waywardness to grieve Him,
And wound His Father-heart.
Let, Father, Thy zeal never
Burn ‘gainst me, nor me sever
From Thee and from Thy blessing;
My doing and transgressing
Awake regret and smart.

Oh! hear me, Father, praying,
My waywardness and straying
From Thee, my evil doing,
Into the ocean throwing,
Forgive eternally.
But may Thine angels hover
Round me, and be my cover,
All evil from me keeping;
With Thee will I be sleeping,
I’ll rise again with Thee.

Now may mine eyelids closing
Be peacefully reposing,
All free from care and sorrow,
Till on the golden morrow
I joyfully awake.
Thy wings shall shield me ever,
The enemy shall never
Thy flock and me endanger,
Whom day and night in anger
His prey he seeks to make.

When silent or when talking,
When sitting or when walking,
To Thee I’m wholly given,
Thou art my life from heaven,
This word is true and sore.
In every undertaking,
In sleeping hours and waking,
My fortress art Thou ever,
Thine arm doth aye deliver,
My bliss doth aye endure.

Paul Gerhardt’s Spiritual Songs,