A midi of Joan Pinkston’s tune for this hymn by James Montgomery (1771-1854) is available here.
Prayer is the soul’s sincere desire,
Uttered or unexpressed;
The motion of a hidden fire
That trembles in the breast.
Prayer is the burden of a sigh,
The falling of a tear,
The upward glancing of an eye
When none but God is near.
Prayer is the simplest form of speech
That infant lips can try;
Prayer, the sublimest strains that reach
The majesty on high.
Prayer is the contrite sinner’s voice,
Returning from his ways;
While angels in their songs rejoice,
And cry, “Behold, he prays!”
Prayer is the Christian’s vital breath,
The Christian’s native air,
His watchword at the gates of death;
He enters heav’n with prayer.
O Thou by whom we come to God,
The life, the truth, the way,
The path of prayer Thyself hast trod:
Lord, teach us how to pray!