Father of Love, our Guide and Friend

Full Text

1 Father of Love, our Guide and Friend,
O lead us gently on,
Until life's trial-time shall end,
And heavenly peace be won.

2 We know not what the path may be
As yet by us untrod;
But we can trust our all to Thee,
Our Father and Our God.

3 If called, like Abraham's child, to climb
The hill of sacrifice,
Some angel may be there in time;
Deliverance shall arise;

4 Or if some darker lot be good,
O teach us to endure
The sorrow, pain, or solitude,
That makes the spirit pure.

5 Christ by no flowery pathway came;
And we, His followers here,
Must do Thy will and praise Thy name,
In hope, and love, and fear.

6 And, till in heaven we sinless bow,
And faultless anthems raise,
O Father, Son, and Spirit now
Accept our feeble praise.


The Hymnal: Published by the authority of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A., 1895

Author: William J. Irons

Irons, William Josiah, D.D., son of Joseph Irons, was born at Hoddesdon, Herts, Sep. 12, 1812, and educated at Queen's College, Oxford (B.A. 1833, D.D. 1854), and took Holy Orders 1835. In 1837 he became Incumbent of St. Peter's, Walworth, and was subsequently Vicar of Barkway, Incumbent of Brompton, Rector of Wadingham; and in 1872, Rector of St. Mary-Woolnoth, formerly held by his father's friend, John Newton. He was also Bampton Lecturer in 1870, and Prebendary of St. Paul's Cathedral. He died June 18, 1883. Dr. Irons took a somewhat prominent part in the ecclesiastical controversies of his day, and published extensively thereon in the form of Sermons, Letters, Pamphlets, &c. His important work, the Bampton Lectures, 1870, was on Christi… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Father of Love, our Guide and Friend
Author: William J. Irons (1844)
Language: English


Father of Love, our Guide and Friend. W.J. Irons. [Confirmation.] Written for a confirmation, held at Brompton in 1844, in 3 stanzas of 8 lines. One of the earliest collections in which it is found is The Hymns for the Christian Seasons, by the Rev. R. T. Lowe, Gainsburgh, 1854, No. 185. In 1861 the author included it in his Words of the Hymns in the App. of the Brompton Metrical Psalter, No. 7 ; in 1866 in his Hymns for use in Church, No. 20; in 1873 in his Hymns for the Church; and in 1875 in his Psalms and Hymns for the Church. In the last two it is divided into 6 stanzas of 4 lines as in the Gainsburgh book of 1854. Outside of Dr. Irons's collections it has attained to a somewhat extensive use in Great Britain and America, and is found in many of the best selections. Originally written for Confirmation, it is also adapted for "The New Year," or, in "Time of Trial." Original text in Thring's Collection 1882, No. 284.

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)


ST. AGNES (Dykes)

John B. Dykes (PHH 147) composed ST. AGNES for [Jesus the Very Thought of Thee]. Dykes named the tune after a young Roman Christian woman who was martyred in A.D. 304 during the reign of Diocletian. St. Agnes was sentenced to death for refusing to marry a nobleman to whom she said, "I am already eng…

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Lowell Mason (PHH 96) adapted AZMON from a melody composed by Carl G. Gläser in 1828. Mason published a duple-meter version in his Modern Psalmist (1839) but changed it to triple meter in his later publications. Mason used (often obscure) biblical names for his tune titles; Azmon, a city south of C…

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