In Our Work and in Our Play

The original version of this hymn was written by William Chatterton Dix, and first published in 1875.

The lyrics were updated by W Charter Piggott (1872-1943), with changes such as "Keep us in thy presence dear" instead "Keeping us in Holy Fear".

Some subsequent publications have changed the final verse to be addressed to the person of Jesus, ie from "May we grow like him in grace" to "May we grow like you in grace" - this latter approach is shown below. Also, many people now leave out the second verse.

With meter 7777, it is set to the tune BATTISHILL, adapted from J Battishill (1738-1801)



In our work, and in our play,
Jesus, be Thou ever near;
Guarding, guiding all the day,
Keep us in Thy presence dear.

Thou didst toil, O royal Child,
In the far-off Holy Land,
Blessing labour undefiled,
Pure and honest, of the hand.

Thou who at thy mother's knee
Learned to hearken and obey,
Then, work done, ran happily,
With the children to their play.

Help us, that with eager mind
We may learn both fact and rule,
Patient, diligent and kind
In the comradeship of school.

Help us, too in sport and game
Gallantly to play our part;
Win or lose, to keep the same
Dauntless spirit and brave heart.

May we grow like You in grace
True in mind and pure of soul,
Meeting life with steadfast face,
Run the race and reach the goal.

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