One of our favorites (we have several, as you'll eventually learn ;-) which was brought to mind on our outdoor excursion yesterday.
This was written by Maltbie D. Babcock, a physically active man who loved to be outdoors, he also played several instruments, and might have become a musician if he had not entered the ministry. He had the habit of taking early morning walks to the top of a hill north of Lockport, New York where he was pastoring at the time. From the hill he had a full view of Lake Ontario and the surrounding countryside. He would tell his wife, "I'm going out to see my Father's world." It was on one of these early morning walks that Mr. Babcock was inspired to write the words to this hymn, although he never heard it sung. He died on a trip to the Holy Land at the age of 43. His wife published many of his writings after his death, and a volume of his poems contained this treasure.This Is My Father's World
This is my Father's world, and to my listening ears all nature sings and round me rings the music of the spheres. This is my Father's world: I rest me in the thought of rocks and trees of skies and seas; His hand the wonders wroght.
This is my Father's world, the birds their carols raise, the morning light, the lily white, declare their Maker's praise. This is my Father's world: he shines in all that's fair; in the rustling grass I hear Him pass, He speaks to me everywhere.
This is my Father's world. Oh, let me ne'er forget that though the wrong seems oft so strong, God is the ruler yet. This is my Father's world: the battle is not done: Jesus who died shall be satisfied and earth and Heav'n be one.
This is my Father's world, dreaming I see His face. I ope my eyes, and in glad surprise cry "The Lord is in this place." This is my Father's world, from the shining courts above, The Beloved One, His Only Son, came -- a pledge of deathless love.
This is my Father's world, should my heart be ever sad? The Lord is King -- let the heavens ring. God reigns -- let the earth be glad. This is my Father's world. Now closer to Heaven bound, for dear to God is the earth Christ trod. No place but is holy ground.
This is my Father's world. I walk a desert lone. In a bush ablaze to my wondering gaze God makes His glory known. This is my Father's world, a wanderer I may roam. Whate're my lot, it matters not, my heart is still at home.
"Christianity is not a voice in the wilderness, but a life in the world. It is not an idea in the air but feet on the ground going God's way. It is not an exotic to be kept under glass, but a hardy plant to bear twelve months of fruits in all kinds of weather. Fidelity to duty is its root and branch. Nothing we can say to the Lord, no calling Him by great or dear names, can take the place of the plain doing of His will. We may cry out about the beauty of eating bread with Him in His kingdom, but it is wasted breath and a rootless hope unless we plow and plant in His kingdom here and now. To remember Him at His table and to forget Him at ours, is to have invested in bad securities. There is no substitute for plain, every-day goodness."
Maltbie Davenport Babcock, 1858-1901
(Originally published @ henandchicks.typepad.com)