Words: Love M. Willis, in Tiffany’s Monthly Magazine, 1859. It appeared in Hymns of the Spirit, by Samuel Longfellow & Samuel Johnson, 1864, where the text was modified considerably, probably by Longfellow.
If you have access to a good photo of Willis (head-and-shoulders, at least 200×300 pixels), would you send us an e-mail?
Father, hear the prayer we offer:
Nor for ease that prayer shall be,
But for strength, that we may ever
Live our lives courageously.
Not forever in green pastures
Do we ask our way to be,
But the steep and rugged pathway
May we tread rejoicingly.
Not forever by still waters
Would we idly, quiet stay;
But would smite the living fountains
From the rocks along our way.
Be our strength in hours of weakness,
In our wanderings be our Guide;
Through endeavor, failure, danger,
Father, be Thou at our side.
Let our path be bright or dreary,
Storm or sunshine be our share;
May our souls in hope unweary
Make Thy work our ceaseless prayer.