O Friend of souls, how well is me

Representative Text

1 O Friend of souls, how blest am I
Whene'er Thy love my spirit calms!
From sorrow's dungeon forth I fly,
And hide me in Thy shelt'ring arms.
The night of weeping flies away
Before the heart-reviving ray
Of love, that beams from out Thy breast;
Here is my heaven on earth begun;
Who is not joyful, that has won
In Thee, O Lord, his joy and rest?

2 The world may call herself my foe,
So be it; for I trust her not,
E'en though a friendly face she show,
And heap with her good things my lot.
In Thee alone will I rejoice,
Thou art the Friend, Lord, of my choice,
For Thou art true when friendships fail;
'Mid storms of woe Thy truth is still
My anchor; hate me as she will,
The world shall o'er me ne'er prevail.

3 The Law may threaten endless death
From awful Sinai's burning hill,
Straightway from its consuming breath
My soul through faith mounts higher still;
She throws herself at Jesus' feet
And finds with Him a safe retreat
Where curse and death can never come.
Though all things threaten condemnation,
Yet Jesus, Thou art my Salvation,
For in Thy love I find my home.

4 Through deserts of the cross Thou leadest,
I follow leaning on Thy hand;
From out the clouds Thy child Thou feedest,
And giv'st him water from the sand.
I know Thy wondrous ways will end
In love and blessing, Thou true Friend;
Enough, if Thou art ever near.
I know whom Thou wilt glorify,
And raise o'er sun and stars on high,
Thou lead'st through depths and darkness here.

5 To others death seems dark and grim,
But not, Thou Life of life, to me,
I know Thou ne'er forsakest him
Whose heart and spirit rest in Thee.
Oh! who would fear his journey's close,
If from dark woods and lurking foes
He then find safety and release?
Nay, rather, with a joyful heart
From this dark region I depart
To Thy eternal light and peace.

6 O Friend of souls, then blest indeed
Am I when on Thy love I lean!
The world, nor pain, nor death I heed,
Since Thou, my God, my Joy hast been.
O let this peace that Thou hast given,
Be but a foretaste of Thy heaven,
For goodness infinite is Thine.
Hence, world with all Thy flattering toys!
In God alone lie all my joys;
O rich delight, my Friend is mine!

Source: Evangelical Lutheran Hymn-book #109

Author: Wolfgang Christoph Dessler

Dessler, Wolfgang Christoph, son of Nicolaus Dessler, jeweller, at Nürnberg, was born at Nürnberg, Feb. 11, 1660. His father wished him to become a goldsmith, but, as he was not physically suited for this, he was permitted to begin the study of theology at the University of Altdorf. His poverty and bodily weakness forced him to leave before completing his course, and, returning to Nurnberg, he supported himself there as a proof reader. Becoming acquainted with Erasmus Finx or Francisci, then residing in Nürnberg, he was employed by Finx as his amanuensis, and at his request translated many foreign religious works into German. In 1705 he was appointed Conrector of the School of the Holy Ghost at Nürnberg, where he laboured with zeal and… Go to person page >

Translator: Catherine Winkworth

Catherine Winkworth (b. Holborn, London, England, 1827; d. Monnetier, Savoy, France, 1878) is well known for her English translations of German hymns; her translations were polished and yet remained close to the original. Educated initially by her mother, she lived with relatives in Dresden, Germany, in 1845, where she acquired her knowledge of German and interest in German hymnody. After residing near Manchester until 1862, she moved to Clifton, near Bristol. A pioneer in promoting women's rights, Winkworth put much of her energy into the encouragement of higher education for women. She translated a large number of German hymn texts from hymnals owned by a friend, Baron Bunsen. Though often altered, these translations continue to be used i… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: O Friend of souls, how well is me
German Title: Wie wohl ist mir o Freund der Seelen
Author: Wolfgang Christoph Dessler (1692)
Translator: Catherine Winkworth (1855)
Language: English
Copyright: Public Domain



Instances (1 - 15 of 15)

Book of Hymns for the Evangelical Lutheran Joint Synod of Wisconsin and Other States #d179

Book of Hymns for the joint Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan and other states #d180

Evangelical Lutheran Hymn Book with Tunes #d311

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Evangelical Lutheran Hymn-book #109

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Evangelical Lutheran Hymn-book #237

Evangelical Lutheran Hymnbook (Lutheran Conference of Missouri and Other States) #d239

Forty-Six Chorales #d33

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Hymnal for Evangelical Lutheran Missions #132

Hymns of the Ages #d104

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Hymns of the Spirit #513

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Lyra Germanica #147


Lyra Germanica #62

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Lyra Germanica #S1-62

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National Hymn and Tune Book #65

The Selah Song Book (Das Sela Gesangbuch) #d535

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