Scripture Verse

Be kindly affectioned one to another. Romans 12:10


Mary R. Smith

Words: May R. Smith, in Sing­ing An­nu­al for Sab­bath Schools (New York: Phi­lip Phil­lips, 1870).

Music: Si­las J. Vail (🔊 pdf nwc).

If you know where to get a good pho­to of Smith or Vail (head-and-shoul­ders, at least 200×300 pix­els), would you ?

For ma­ny years this was the fa­vo­rite hymn of Fran­cis Mur­phy, the great tem­per­ance lec­tur­er, and was the key­note of all his meet­ings. I had the plea­sure of at­tend­ing ma­ny of his ser­vic­es in Chi­ca­go, and have seen him move an au­di­ence to tears by his pa­the­tic ren­der­ing of this hymn. It is be­lieved that thou­sands of drink­ing men have been saved through its in­stru­men­tal­i­ty.

I had the plea­sure of meet­ing the au­thor of this hymn in Il­li­nois in 1878, and was sur­prised to learn that she her­self was child­less—al­though ve­ry fond of chil­dren, as shown in the ten­der ex­press­ions in the lat­ter por­tion of the hymn.

Sankey, p. 241


Let us gather up the sunbeams,
Lying all around our path;
Let us keep the wheat and roses,
Casting out the thorns and chaff;
Let us find our sweetest comfort
In the blessings of today,
With a patient hand removing
All the briers from the way.


Then scatter seeds of kindness,
Then scatter seeds of kindness,
Then scatter seeds of kindness,
For our reaping by and by.

Strange we never prize the music
Till the sweet-voiced bird is flown!
Strange that we should slight the violets
Till the lovely flowers are gone!
Strange that summer skies and sunshine
Never seem one half so fair,
As when winter’s snowy pinions
Shake the white down in the air.


If we knew the baby fingers
Pressed against the window pane,
Would be cold and stiff tomorrow—
Never trouble us again—
Would the bright eyes of our darling
Catch the frown upon our brow?
Would the prints of rosy fingers
Vex us then as they do now?


Ah! those little ice-cold fingers,
How they point our memories back
To the hasty words and actions
Strewn along our backward track!
How those little hands remind us,
As in snowy grace they lie,
Not to scatter thorns—but roses—
For our reaping by and by.