Welcome!  Hymns have been and continue to be a real source of inspiration to me.  My desire in this blog is to share special hymns with my readers hoping that the words will minister to them, especially in times of great personal need.  If one of these hymns ministers to you, please take time to leave a comment so that I know that my blog is helping others as much as it helps me. Sometimes I will also provide a link where you can go to hear the hymn played.  So, please join me here each week and sing along as we praise God together.

Sunday, May 27, 2018


      "The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen." ( 2 Corinthians 13:14).  The Trinitarian hymn, "Praise Ye The Triune God!", was written by Elizabeth Charles (1828-1896) in 1858.  Mrs. Charles is said to have written over fifty books, the majority of which  were of a semi-religious character. She also wrote and translated several hymns.  Today believers recognize the existence, impact and importance of the Trinity in our lives even though the word Trinity does not actually appear in the Bible. This hymn brings praise and honor to God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit, something that we should learn to do daily. 
          For excellent comments about the Trinity and its relationship to this hymn I would recommend the book "Amazing Grace - 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotionals" by Kenneth W. Osbeck, published by Kregel Publications.  See his devotional for May 25 printed on Page 160. 
         This beautiful hymn praises the loving kindness of the Father, the compassion of the Savior, and the comfort of the Spirit.  What an awesome God we serve! Take time this week to praise the three persons of the Trinity as they are active in our world and in our lives.  Praise ye the triune God!

1    Praise ye the Father for His loving-kindness,
tenderly caring for His erring children;
praise Him, ye angels; praise Him in the heavens;
praise to the Savior!

2    Praise ye the Savior for His deep compassion,
graciously caring for His chosen people;
young men and maidens, ye old men and children,
praise to the Savior!

3    Praise ye the Spirit, Comforter of Israel,
sent from the Father and the Son to bless us;
praise to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit!
Praise to the triune God!

Listen to it here.   PRAISE

Sunday, May 20, 2018


          If you've ever watched a movie about frontier life and there was a scene involving a church service, you probably heard the congregation singing "Bringing in the Sheaves".  For some reason this old hymn has taken hold of the popular imagination as the go-to cultural reference for American "old-time religion."  It also seems they were singing this hymn every time the Ingalls family went to church on Little House on the Prairie.  The hymn probably was very popular when a large portion of the population knew about farm life.  They knew that during the time of harvest farmers would bring in the sheaves, the stalks of cut or harvested grain which had been bound together after reaping.  The hymn was  based on Psalm 126:5-6 which says: "Those who sow in tears shall reap in joy. He who continually goes forth weeping, bearing seed for sowing, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him."  The lyrics were written in 1874 by Knowles Shaw (1834-1878).   His early life was spent in Indiana where he first began to play the violin, furnishing the music for many a dance. While a rowdy dance party was going on he was converted, ceasing to play in the middle of the piece he was performing. Very soon thereafter he entered the ministry. Most of his time after that was spent in the West and South and, on account of his wonderful vocal powers, he was called the "singing evangelist." As a singer he was considered by some as being equal to Sankey and Bliss. The press often spoke of his singing as something wonderful. Soon after beginning to preach, he also began to compose and to write music.  Records kept at the time suggest that the Lord used him to bring nearly 20,000 people to Christ.  There is often hard work involved in our service for the Lord, with heavy burdens and sometimes even tears. But the end result is well worth it. This harvest of bringing in the sheaves can be souls saved through the planting seeds of the Gospel. But in a broader sense it is the result of all Christian endeavor.  As Paul states, "Let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart."  Bringing in the sheaves is the result of a life lived fully for the Lord.  Are we being obedient so that the Lord may give us an abundant harvest? Today this famous hymn has been dropped from most hymnbooks The argument is that it's a throwback to our rural, agrarian past and just is not meaningful to very many in our more urban, technological society. Maybe, maybe not. But the acid test is not whether it is old or new but whether it is scriptural. And the thought of this song is taken directly from the Bible,. If we can appreciate what God's word says about sowing the seed and reaping the harvest in Psalm 126, then we should be able to understand the picture of this song and the importance of bringing In the sheaves."  May each of us be about the challenge of spreading the seed in all that we do and say. Remember Galatians 6:7-9: "Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up".

1.     Sowing in the morning, sowing seeds of kindness,
Sowing in the noontide and the dewy eve;
Waiting for the harvest, and the time of reaping,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.
Bringing in the sheaves, bringing in the sheaves,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves,
Bringing in the sheaves, bringing in the sheaves,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves

2.     Sowing in the sunshine, sowing in the shadows,
Fearing neither clouds nor winter's chilling breeze;
By and by the harvest, and the labor ended,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.
Bringing in the sheaves, bringing in the sheaves,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves,
Bringing in the sheaves, bringing in the sheaves,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves

3.     Going forth with weeping, sowing for the Master,
Though the loss sustained our spirit often grieves;
When our weepings over, He will bid us welcome,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.
Bringing in the sheaves, bringing in the sheaves,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves,
Bringing in the sheaves, bringing in the sheaves,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves

You can listen to it here.   LISTEN

Sunday, May 13, 2018


          My heart breaks when I hear of and see pictures of the devastation that so many folks suffer from storms - tornados, hurricanes, mud slides, floods, lightening strikes volcanos and so much more.  I just can't fully understand the tragedy they are going through.  Personally, I have been so very fortunate not to have gone through any of these, although we have had numerous tornados close to our home.  We have watched on television as the storms approach us and then thank the Lord as they pass by and miss us.  What a relief when the storm finally passes by.  But there are serious storms in life of other kinds that we all often must face.  Spiritual and emotional storms abound.  Illness, financial loss, family breakups, loss of jobs and so many other unexpected storms hit us so hard.  And I think those kinds of difficult storms may also be part of the focus of this week's choice, written by Mosie Lister in 1958.  He may have been inspired by the story of Jesus who was with His disciples  in a boat when a vicious storm hit them.  In Mark 4:39 we read, "And He arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace be still.  And the wind ceased and there was a great calm." The scared disciples were astonished and relieved when upon the command of Jesus, the storm passed by.  It is said that this hymn was actually written for Mahalia Jackson, but it never reached her. A friend asked Lister to write a song for Jackson who at that time was well known for her rendition of the song "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands". Lister said that because he grew up among minority groups, he had an idea about the background of Jackson and wanted to write a song that would be a prayer for a person who has undergone struggles in life.  The song was never given to her but it was written and many other people have actually been blessed by it.  Lister's hymn also echoes the promise of God to Israel in Isaiah 43:2: "When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, nor shall the flame scorch you". The best part of this promise is that God not only said they would make it through, but that He would go with them! There was no fear of loneliness!  And that is also His promise to us today for Jesus has said that He would never leave us or forsake us. And He hasn't.  And He won't.  He will go with you through your storm.  He will hold you fast and let you stand in the hollow of His hand.  And one day He will take His children to that place where the long night has ended and the storms come no more. And we will stand with Him on that bright peaceful shore.  May that promise and truth be your encouragement as you experience His presence and peace while your storm passes by.

1.     In the dark of the midnight
have I oft hid my face
While the storm howls above me,
and there's no hiding place
'Mid the crash of the thunder, P
recious Lord, hear my cry
Keep me safe till the storm passes by
Till the storm passes over,
till the thunder sounds no more
Till the clouds roll forever from the sky
Hold me fast, let me stand in the hollow of Thy hand
Keep me safe till the storm passes by

2.     Many times Satan whispered,
"There is no need to try
For there's no end of sorrow,
there's no hope by and by"
But I know Thou art with me,
and tomorrow I'll rise
Where the storms never darken the skies
Till the storm passes over,
till the thunder sounds no more
Till the clouds roll forever from the sky
Hold me fast, let me stand in the hollow of Thy hand
Keep me safe till the storm passes by

3.     When the long night has ended
and the storms come no more
Let me stand in Thy presence
on the bright peaceful shore
In that land where the tempest,
never comes, Lord, may I
Dwell with Thee when the storm passes by
Till the storm passes over,
till the thunder sounds no more
Till the clouds roll forever from the sky
Hold me fast, let me stand in the hollow of Thy hand
Keep me safe till the storm passes by

Words and Music by Mosie Lister
copyright 1958

Listen to it here.   LISTEN

Sunday, May 6, 2018


TIMELESS HYMN #18 - Another revised and repeated blog of one of the great hymns of the faith - BE STILL MY SOUL - originally shared on March 22, 2009.

          Have your days been stressful?  Do your days seem filled with pressures and obligations?  Are you burdened with problems which seem to have no solution?  Do you seem to have too many deadlines to meet?  Do you find that the days are just to short to get everything done that must be done?  I have had these stressful experiences and I imagine that most of you have as well.  Sometimes we get so wrapped up in the urgent issues of life that we get overwhelmed and fail to sense or acknowledge the presence of God's Spirit in our lives.  But He is always there to give us the guidance, strength, and peace that we need.  This hymn is one of my favorites and it reminds me that He is faithful and always there to help - I just need to be still and let Him handle the stress and pressures in my life.  "Be Still My Soul" was a popular revival hymn that was written by Katharine von Schlegel (1697 - 1768) and translated into English by Jane L. Borthwick (1813-1897). The music was composed by Jean Sibelius from his music 'Finlandia.'   It is said to have been a favorite of Eric Liddell, the athlete who became famous for refusing to run in the Olympics on the Sabbath.  He later became a missionary in China and was imprisoned during World War II.  He is said to have taught this hymn to others in prison where he eventually died of a brain tumor.  On a personal note, I am actually rewriting this Timeless Hymn this hymn in March.  My wife has a very important medical appointment scheduled for tomorrow with a specialist and they are now calling for a plowable snow.  I admit that I have been stressed about getting her there as well as how we will clear our driveway  since both of us have heart conditions and are not supposed to shovel.  And we can't find anybody to do it for us, even if we pay them. The stress of this has also created physical problems for me.  But as I've prepared this blog the words of this hymn have again spoken to me and my present need.  I know I need to give the problems to him and be still before Him.  It will be interesting when this is published in May to look back and see how He worked all of this out.  Scripture tells us in Psalm 46:10, "Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth."  So if you are also stressed today, take time to sing this hymn, reflect upon the words and recognize that God is closer than you think and He is ready to handle your stress.  Just be still and let Him do so.  P.S. - Incidentally, I took my own advice.  After writing this blog I was still before the Lord and left my concerns in His hands.  Later the specialist called and rescheduled my wife's appointment due to the predicted snow and then the major snowstorm never even hit our area.  So why do I worry and fret? 

1.    Be still, my soul: the Lord is on thy side.
Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain.
Leave to thy God to order and provide;
In every change, He faithful will remain.
Be still, my soul: thy best, thy heavenly Friend
Through thorny ways leads to a joyful end.

2.    Be still, my soul: thy God doth undertake
To guide the future, as He has the past.
Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake;
All now mysterious shall be bright at last.
Be still, my soul: the waves and winds still know
His voice Who ruled them while He dwelt below.

3.     Be still, my soul: when dearest friends depart,
And all is darkened in the vale of tears,
Then shalt thou better know His love, His heart,
Who comes to soothe thy sorrow and thy fears.
Be still, my soul: thy Jesus can repay
From His own fullness all He takes away.

4.     Be still, my soul: the hour is hastening on
When we shall be forever with the Lord.
When disappointment, grief and fear are gone,
Sorrow forgot, love's purest joys restored.
Be still, my soul: when change and tears are past
All safe and blessed we shall meet at last.

Listen to it here.     LISTEN