Rise, my soul, and stretch thy wings

Full Text

1 Rise, my soul, and stretch thy wings,
Thy better portion trace;
Rise from transitory things
Toward heaven, thy destined place.
Sun and moon and stars decay,
Time shall soon this earth remove;
Rise, my soul, and haste away
To seats prepared above.

2 Rivers to the ocean run,
Nor stay in all their course;
Fire ascending seeks the sun;
Both speed them to their source:
So my soul, derived from God,
Longs to view His glorious face,
Forward tends to His abode,
To rest in His embrace.

3 Cease, my soul, then, cease to mourn,
Press onward to the prize;
Soon the Saviour will return
Triumphant in the skies:
Yet a season, and we know
Happy entrance will be given,
All our sorrows left below,
And earth exchanged for heaven.


Source: The Hymnbook #330

Author: Robert Seagrave

Robert Seagrave was born at Twyford, Leicestershire, in 1693. He studied at Clare Hall, Cambridge, graduating in 1718. In 1739, he was appointed Sunday Evening Lecturer at Lorimer's Hall, London. He afterwards preached in the Tabernacle, in connection with the Calvinistic Methodists. The date of his death is unknown. He published some treatises on doctrinal subjects, and on the duties of the ministry. In 1742, he published "Hymns for Christian Worship." His hymns have been published by Sedgwick (1860). --Annotations of the Hymnal, Charles Hutchins, M.A., 1872.… Go to person page >


Rise, my soul, and stretch thy wings. R. Seagrave. [Heaven desired.] Appeared in his Hymns for Christian Worship, &c, 1742, in 4 stanzas of 8 1ines, and entitled "The Pilgrim's Song"; and again in D. Sedgwick's reprint of Seagrave's Hymns, 1860. In 1753 Seagrave's intimate friend, G. Whitefield, included it, with the omission of st. iii., as No. 2 of Pt. ii. of his Hymns for Social Worship. This was repeated in most of the older collections, and is the form of the hymn usually given in modern hymnals. The use of this hymn is extensive in Great Britain and America. Original text in Lyra Britannica, 1867.

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)



For more tune info, see Zahn 7341a or Hymn Tune Index 1648a-d. Note that attributions to James Nares don't appear until after 1820.

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