Archive for the ‘Hymns’ Category

Going Bald!!

But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore” – Jesus (Luke 12:7)

Personal experience informs me that number of hairs on my head is changing! And that’s exactly the point.

Jesus is bringing us back to a simple fact. If God is so aware of the least significant is he not also aware of what is most important in my life — my spouse, my work, my children, my loved ones, etc? Though, as with my hair, I don’t always like the results, I know God is involved and working the events of my life to my good and his love. And since I trust him, it is enough.

As the chorus of Civilla Martin’s 1905 hymn says,

“His eye is on the sparrow, and I know he watches me.”

— fritz@langgang.com

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Two quick stories about Jesus with the same lesson:

The first, after feeding the multitude, Jesus sent his disciples ahead of him by boat but they ran into trouble. A terrible storm was sinking their boat when, to their shock, Jesus was walking past them on the water. Mark records that detail the others missed.

“…about the fourth watch of the night he cometh unto them, walking upon the sea, and would have passed by them. But they saw him” – Mark 6:48

The second story involved two lesser known disciples who encounter the risen Lord without recognizing him. They walked and talked but then

“[as] they drew nigh unto the village, whither they went: … he made as though he would have gone further. But they constrained him, saying, Abide with us” – Luke 24:28-29a

Without some sort of personal response it seems Jesus is quite content to pass right on by.

Don’t let him do that!

Blind Fanny Crosby put it this way in her famous hymn:

Pass me not, O gentle Savior,
Hear my humble cry;
While on others Thou art calling,
Do not pass me by.

Savior, Savior,
Hear my humble cry;
While on others Thou art calling,
Do not pass me by.

Let me at Thy throne of mercy
Find a sweet relief,
Kneeling there in deep contrition;
Help my unbelief.


Trusting only in Thy merit,
Would I seek Thy face;
Heal my wounded, broken spirit,
Save me by Thy grace.


Thou the Spring of all my comfort,
More than life to me,
Whom have I on earth beside Thee?
Whom in Heav’n but Thee?


– fritz@langgang.com

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Paradigm Shift

“Thou preparest a table before me” – Psalm 23:5a

The focus of Psalm 23 shifted, becoming no longer “He”, but “Thou”. It happened when speaking of God’s protection – Thy rod, Thy staff…” No longer is the speaker telling someone about God but is speaking directly to God.

Life in Christ is a one-on-one, “Thou and Me” experience, which can’t be explained to others.

As the refrain of C. Austin Miles’ 1913 hymn, In the Garden,1 says

And he walks with me, and he talks with me,
and he tells me I am his own;
and the joy we share as we tary there,
none other has ever known.

– fritz
1 – http://www.hymnsite.com/lyrics/umh314.sht

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“The LORD is my shepherd…He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake” – Psalm 23:1a, 3

It’s after his restoration of our soul that we can be lead in paths of righteousness.

That restoration makes us want to do the right thing, only then can enables us follow, not as a precondition but as the result. This is his work, and he gets the glory for it.

Charles Wesley, Anglican Priest and brother to John Wesley who founded the Methodist Church, wrote in his hymn “O For A Thousand Tongues to Sing”

He breaks the power of cancelled sin
He sets the prisoner free
His blood can make the foulest clean
His blood availed for me

– fritz

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Restoration of Soul

“The LORD is my shepherd … He restoreth my soul” – Psalm 23:1a, 3a

Those who have made a study of such things tell us the soul is where our Mind, Will, and Emotions reside.

Experiences in life can mar the soul. Dysfunctional people never intended to become that way; life squeezes the stuffing out – but Jesus, our shepherd, restores.

We don’t get our act together first then come to him, we come as we are, submit to his Lordship, he restores as we follow.

Take a moment (Hey, you have time) to read the lyrics of the old hymn, Come, Ye Sinners, Poor and Needy (Joseph Hart, pub. 1759)1

Come, ye sinners, poor and needy,
Weak and wounded, sick and sore;
Jesus ready stands to save you,
Full of pity, love and pow’r.

I will arise and go to Jesus,
He will embrace me in His arms;
In the arms of my dear Savior,
Oh, there are ten thousand charms.

Come, ye weary, heavy-laden,
Lost and ruined by the fall;
If you tarry till you’re better,
You will never come at all.

Let not conscience make you linger,
Not of fitness fondly dream;
All the fitness He requireth
Is to feel your need of Him.

– fritz@langgang.com
1 – http://library.timelesstruths.org/music/Come_Ye_Sinners_Poor_and_Needy/

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Time, like an ever rolling stream,

Bears all its sons away;

They fly, forgotten, as a dream

Dies at the opening day.

– Hymn: O God, Our Help in ages Past, Isaac Watts

I don’t know why my wife loves me; she probably couldn’t tell you, either. It is God’s gift to her and me we can enjoy but not explain.

Love is that way – it chooses its own objects of affection. Our part is to accept it, or not.

God’s Love for us is like that, too. Why he would choose such an unlikely candidate, who is only here for a brief moment, is beyond my cognitive powers. Mine (and yours) is to respond with a “Yes!” or move on.

“In him we were also chosen … to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.” – Ephesians 1:11, 3:18b-19

Love doesn’t tolerate, it chooses.

– fritz

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