Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ. Ephesians 1:3
Before writers Charles Wesley or Isaac Watts, there was Thomas Ken who has been called England’s first hymnist. He was born in 1637 on the fringe of London. When his parents died, he was raised by his half-sister and her husband, who enrolled him in historic Winchester College. Thomas was later ordained to the ministry and returned to Winchester as a chaplain.
To encourage the devotional habits of the boys, he wrote thee hymns during a time English hymns didn’t exist. Thomas suggested the boys use the hymns privately in their rooms.
One hymn was to be sung when waking up, another at bedtime, and a third at midnight if they couldn’t get to sleep for some reason. His morning hymn had thirteen stanzas, beginning with: Awake, my soul, and with the sun they daily stage of duty run; Shake off dull sloth and joyful rise, to pay the morning sacrifice.
His evening hymn, equally meaningful, included this verse: All praise to Thee, my God, this night, for all the blessings of the light! Keep me, O keep me, King of kings, beneath Thine own almighty wings.
All three hymns ended with a stanza which has become the most widely-sung verse in the world: Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow; Praise Him, all creatures here below; Praise Him above, ye heavenly host; Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
When Thomas died in 1711, he was buried at sunrise, and the Doxology he wrote in 1674 was sung at his funeral.
The words of this short verse are still encouraging and can used to sooth weary souls. Click here: http://youtu.be/T1rW2qLaeu0