Twofold Father Is My Prayer

Twofold, Father! is my pray’r,
Twofold the desire I there
Lay before Thee, who dost give
What’s good for us to receive;
Grant the pray’r that Thou dost know,
Ere my soul to Thee must go
From the body’s bands below.

Grant that far from me may be
Lying and idolatry;
Poverty immoderate
Give me not, nor riches great;
Too great wealth or poverty
Is not good, for either may
‘Neath the devil’s pow’r us lay.

Give to me, my Saviour! give
Modest portion while I live;
Evermore supply my need,
Giving me my daily bread;
Little, with contented mood,
And a conscience pure and good,
Is the best can be bestow’d.

If my cup should overflow,
Proud in spirit I might grow,
Thee deny with scornful word,
Asking who is God and Lord?
For the heart with pride doth swell,
Often knows not when ’tis well,
How itself enough t’ extol.

Should I bare and naked be,
Sunk in too deep poverty,
Faithless, I might wickedly
Steal my neighbour’s property;
Force might use and artifice,
Follow lawless practices,
Never ask what Christian is.

God! my Treasure and my Light,
Neither course for me were right,
Either would dishonour Thee,
Sink me into hell’s dark sea;
Therefore, give, Lord! graciously,
What Thy heart designs for me,
Moderate my portion be!

Paul Gerhardt’s Spiritual Songs,