Great King! from Heaven’s high throne descending low,
In Bethlehem’s stable born in cold and woe,
Thou shiverest in a manger, Babe divine,
Much hast Thou borne for sins: how much for mine!
The world’s creator Thou, our God adored,
Thou sufferest cold and want, O humbled Lord!
Dear chosen Child! when love transforms Thee so,
For Thee my heart the more with love shall glow.
In joy reposing on Thy Father’s breast,
How can a couch of straw afford Thee rest?
Sweet love, thus pained, inflame my frozen heart,
Jesus! to me Thy purest love impart.
If thus to suffer was Thy gracious will,
Yet, loving Savior! let me ask Thee still,
What could Thy blissful soul to suffering move?
Thou weepest—not for grief—Ah no! for love.
Thou grievest, after all Thy love, to see
Thyself so little loved, O God, by me;
Yet if the past so little love has shown,
I love Thee now, O Jesus, Thee alone.
Thou sleepest, holy Infant! but Thou art
For us still wakeful in Thy tender heart:
Tell me, O beauteous Lamb! say what may be
Thy thoughts?—I hear thee lisp:
To die for thee.
Thou dwellest on Thy death for me, with joy;
Who then, save Thee, shall all my thoughts employ?
Mary, my hope! if less I love your Son,
O love Him you for me, and all is done.