Author: Karl Philipp Spitta (1801-1859) Composer: Charles Crozat Converse, 1868 (1832-1918)
1. As a trav’ler home returning From some far and distant land, Thinks of it with bosom yearning, Ere his foot has touched the strand, So amid the noisy pleasures Of the world the heart oft sighs For the nobler, higher treasures Laid up for us in the skies.
2. All our choice and our endeavor Are for Him who gave us love, And our soul would live forever For Him who came from above. Here alone it finds contentment; Here alone delights to be; Gladly leaves the world’s enchantment For the joy it shares with Thee.
3. Jesus, like a magnet, raises Our faint spirit to the skies; And we seem in pray’r and praises As on eagle’s wings to rise. All our life and conversation Is before our Saviour’s face; All our thoughts and occupation This vain world cannot embrace.
4. Should our enemies asperse us, Our dear Lord, who loves us so, Bids us bless e’en those who curse us And to love our greatest foe. He, who died for our salvation And on us hath life bestowed, Wills that by our conversation We should glorify our God.
5. Can we have our hearts in heaven And yet earthly-minded live? Can we, who have been forgiven, Not forget and not forgive? Can we hate an erring brother, Only love when we are loved, And not bear with one another, By Christ’s Holy Spirit moved?
6. Nay, no hater or blasphemer, None who slander and defame, Can be one with the Redeemer, Who was gentle as a lamb. Love will cause assimilation With the object of our love; Love will work a transformation And renewal from above.
7. Let me ne’er from Thee be parted, Saviour true and full of love! That I may live true and holy, Send Thy teaching from above! Keep me from the world unspotted, That I may not only be To Thy service here devoted, But abide in heav’n with Thee!
Special thanks to the Apostolic Christians who diligently labored to keep their rich musical heritage alive when most other denominations forsook it in the challenging battle of changing cultures. Thanks be to those souls who labored to write and compose this treasure of praise, many now only known to GOD!