A poetic paraphrase by J. WILLIAMS THORNE of a sermon delivered by JESSE KERSEY, date and place unknown.
Clippings Files, Card 2, Chester County Historical Society, West Chester, PA.
This is The Quaker Homiletics Online Anthology, Section 3: The 19th Century.
Our Heavenly Father, kindly wise, Has spread before our sight The loveliness of earth and skies, To claim our praise aright. That while our eyes with rapture see Each good and pleasant thing, Our tender gratitude may be An unfeigned offering. The blossemed shrubs that charm the grove, The streamlets flowing there, And songs of wild birds as thy soar In the soft vernal air. Were thy not given to endear our hearts To Him who reigns above? Whose ever beauteous hand imparts Such unasked gifts of love! Is not the earth with plenty filled? Do not the field's o'erflow? And almost without culture yield What e're the climate can grow? And shall our stubborn hearts refuse The grateful song to raise? And while each pleasant gift we use, Neglect the giver's praise? Do not the gales that round us breath Fresh fragrance as they rove, The flowers that careless blow beneath And the blue Heavens above. The rivers as they ceaseless run, The restless oceans flow, And the still burning quenchless sun Their Heavenly author show? Do not the stars that shine so bright, In the deep wilds of space, Seen as the Maker's guiding light To our last resting place? And while we in these orbs of fire His holy hand descry, Do they not tender hopes inspire, Of immortality? Then let us praise Him and adore In early youth's fresh bloom, Nor cease till life's pulse beats no more And the last summons comes. Devotion's fires so purely bright Shall cheer our lives along -- and he was our morning light Shall be our evening song.