The Incarnation

14 12 2014

Glory be to God on high,
And peace on earth descend;
Now God comes down, He bows the sky,
And shows Himself our Friend!
God the invisible appears,
God the Blest, the Great I AM,
He sojourns in this vale of tears,
And Jesus is His Name.

Him by the angels all adored,
Their Maker and their King;
Lo, tidings of their humbled Lord
They now to mortals bring;
Emptied of His majesty,
Of His dazzling glories shorn,
Our being’s Source begins to be,
And God Himself is born!

See the eternal Son of God
A mortal Son of Man,
Now dwelling in an earthly clod
Whom Heaven cannot contain!
Stand amazed, ye heavens, look at this!
See the Lord of earth and skies
Low humbled to the dust He is,
And in a manger lies!

So do the sons of men rejoice
The Prince of Peace proclaim,
With Heaven’s host lift up our voice,
And shout Immanuel’s Name;
Our knees and hearts to Him we bow;
Of our flesh, and of our bone,
See—Jesus is our Brother now,
And God is all our own!

 

Charles Wesley

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The Church Song

13 07 2014

Come on now, choir, quit your singing;

And preacher, just stop your preaching!

I’ve got places to get.

 

Well, I admit,

I simply cannot stand it,

can’t stand it no more.

 

And why does the prayer never end?

Are they punishing me for my sin?

 

And is it just me,

or does it seem they’re from a foreign country?

 

Besides, there ain’t no way their joy is real.

Those plastic happy faces just conceal,

‘cause if they’re anything like me,

they are hiding reality.

 

No doubt they are hypocrites, too;

Judgmental hateful folks, I am sure.

It must be a show;

if I probe they’re a wreck, I just know.

 

That’s what I once thought.

Yet in spite of it all,

I heard you, Lord, speaking to me,

when I finally gave in

and repented of my sin.

Wow! Did I taste and see!

‘Cause to my surprise,

the Lord opened my eyes

to far more than I imagined.

 

Then I joined the choir,

and learned to like prayer,

and I’ve even preached a few sermons.

 

But I speak their own language when I speak,
And I try not to put them to sleep.

 

But I preach the Word,

and they’re raised to life by the good Lord.

They’re not perfect, all those church folks;

sometimes, not even close.

But I’ve found no closer friends

who will love and will give to the end,

and despite all the blemishes,

I believe that the Church is

God’s main way to reach His world.

 

So by grace I’ll spend my life

loving His Bride and

washing Her with His Word,

washing her feet as I serve.

 

 

Casey Getz

 

(Copyright 2012; used by permission.)

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His Holy Name Revere

24 06 2014

O give the Lord whole-hearted praise,
To Him thanksgiving I will bring;
With all His people I will raise
My voice and of His glory sing.

His saints delight to search and trace
His mighty works and wondrous ways;
Majestic glory, boundless grace
And righteousness His work displays.

The wondrous works that God has wrought
His people ever keep in mind,
His works with grace and mercy fraught,
Revealing that the Lord is kind.

God’s promise shall forever stand,
He cares for those who trust His word;
Upon His saints His mighty hand
The wealth of nations has conferred.

His works are true and just indeed,
His precepts are forever sure;
In truth and righteousness decreed
They shall for evermore endure.

From Him His saints’ redemption came;
His covenant sure no change can know;
Let all revere His holy Name
In heaven above and earth below.

In reverence and in godly fear
Man finds the gate to wisdom’s ways;
The wise His holy Name revere;
Through endless ages sound His praise.

Psalm 111 as rendered in the 1912 Psalter of the Presbyterian and Reformed churches of America )

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First-Day Thoughts

27 10 2013

In calm and cool and silence, once again
I find my old accustomed place among
My brethren, where, perchance, no human tongue
Shall utter words; where never hymn is sung,
Nor deep-toned organ blown, nor censer swung,
Nor dim light falling through the pictured pane!
There, syllabled by silence, let me hear
The still small voice which reached the prophet’s ear;
Read in my heart a still diviner law
Than Israel’s leader on his tables saw!
There let me strive with each besetting sin,
Recall my wandering fancies, and restrain
The sore disquiet of a restless brain;
And, as the path of duty is made plain,
May grace be given that I may walk therein,
Not like the hireling, for his selfish gain,
With backward glances and reluctant tread,
Making a merit of his coward dread,
But, cheerful, in the light around me thrown,
Walking as one to pleasant service led;
Doing God’s will as if it were my own,
Yet trusting not in mine, but in His strength alone.

John Greenleaf Whittier

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