He leadeth me! O blessed thought

He leadeth me! O blessed thought,
O words with heav’nly comfort fraught;
Whate’er I do, where’er I be,
Still ’tis Christ’s hand that leadeth me.
  He leadeth me! He leadeth me!
By His own hand He leadeth me;
His faithful follower I would be,
  For by His hand He leadeth me.
Sometimes ’mid scenes of deepest gloom,
Sometimes where Eden’s bowers bloom,
By waters still, o’er troubled sea,
Still ’tis His hand that leadeth me.
Lord, I would clasp Thy hand in mine,
Nor ever murmur or repine;
Content, whatever lot I see,
Since it is Thou that leadest me.
And when my task on earth is done,
When, by Thy grace, the vict’ry’s won,
E’en death’s cold wave I will not flee,
Since Thou in triumph leadest me.
Steve Miller

Detroit, Michigan, United States

Joseph Gilmore was born in Boston, Mass. He served as pastor of several churches in the East and later taught Hebrew and English literature at Newton Seminary and Rochester University and wrote several college texts on these subjects. Although Gilmore was highly respected in his day in both religious and educational circles, today he is best remembered for this one hymn, hurriedly written when he was just 28 years of age.

"I had been speaking at the Wednesday evening service of the First Baptist Church in Philadelphia about the truths of the 23rd Psalm, and had been especially impressed with the blessedness of being led by God Himself. At the close of the service we adjourned to Deacon Watson's pleasant home where we were being entertained. During our conversation the wonder and blessedness of God's leading so grew upon me that I took out my pencil, wrote the text just as it stands today, handed it to my wife, and thought no more of it."

"Without my husband's knowledge, I sent the quickly written text to the 'Watchman and Reflector Magazine', where it first appeared the following year. You can imagine my husband's surprise when he discovered his own hymn text already in print."

"3 years later I went to Rochester, New York, to preach as a candidate for the 2nd Baptist Church. Upon entering the chapel I took up a hymnal thinking, 'I wonder what they sing here.' To my amazement the book opened at 'He Leadeth Me', and that was the 1st time I knew that my words had found a place among the songs of the church."

William Bradbury discovered Joseph Gilmore's text in the 'Watchman and Reflector Magazine' and composed a fitting melody to match the words. Bradbury also added the last 2 lines of the refrain.

When the 1st Baptist Church building of Philadelphia was demolished in 1926, it was replaced at the busy Broad and Arch intersection by a large new office building with a prominent bronze tablet containing the words for the 1st stanza of "He Leadeth Me." The inscription stated:

"This is in recognition of the beauty and fame of the beloved hymn, and in remembrance of its distinguished author."

Perhaps more than any other of our time, this hymn has been translated into many different languages. It is often one of the 1st hymns that missionaries translate into a native tongue. Servicemen during World War II were greatly surprised to find "He Leadeth Me" widely sung by the primitive Polynesians in the South Pacific. Like the 23rd Psalm on which it is based, the hymn meets a very basic and universal need in the lives of God's children everywhere - assurance of the Lord's guidance for every decision and crisis in life. - '52 Hymn Stories Dramatized' by Kenneth W. Osbeck

B. Uwera

Arlington, Virginia, United States

This morning this beautiful hymn has been on my heart. I am so thankful to have a faithful Savior who leads with love and care. It's so encouraging to see how this song has and is still blessing many. Praise be to our Lord.

Peter Mwaura.

Nairobi Kenya, Kiambu, Kenya

This song reminds me the role of a shepherd where Jesus says in John 10 that He walks ahead of His sheep. I desire to be led by Him.

Cynthia Stevens

Kingston, Jamaica

A short while ago I was searching for the hymn " I am Thine O Lord" but could not locate in the hymnal as the index is missing, God led me to it.

That's why I am singing this song. It’s a powerful testimony that God will lead us and instruct in the way we should go. The devil wanted to obstruct but God said ,"No way" Thank You Jesus for coming to my rescue. Amen.


This song which I used to sing many years ago came to mind and was such a blessing. At 84 it is so good to still know the leading of a faithful Shepherd.

Grant G

Boston, MA, United States

By His own hand He leadeth me....o precious God, I will forever be grateful. Thank You Jesus!

Maria B. Lawful

Irvington, NJ, United States

Thanks be God of Israel..who is leading me beautiful song..100% Blessed.


Medillín, Colombia

I love this song.


Clinton, SC, United States

Thanking God that His will is perfect and that my lot is of His decree. His I am... by His grace alone.

Brenda Floyd

Munday, TX, United States

As I was thinking about Jesus being my Good Shepherd, the Holy Spirit brought this song to my mind...Thank You, Jesus, for leading me. I praise Your Holy Name.