It was a sleepless night and the sound of the pounding rain only served to disrupt my much needed rest. As I twisted and turned to find a comfortable position, I would awaken to find my overly saturated mind silently singing Christian hymns or praise songs from my youth. How odd for someone who once wrote a paper in high school that vintage Christian hymns should be abandoned for the more trendy songs of the Jesus Movement in full force at that time. I am fairly certain the song I critiqued in my paper was Blessed Assurance. Strange how that was one of the songs I found myself humming last night.
Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine! Oh, what a foretaste of glory divine. Heir of salvation, purchase of God, Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood.
Refrain: This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Savior all the day long; This is my story, this is my song, Praising my Savior all the day long.
Perfect submission, perfect delight, Visions of rapture now burst on my sight; Angels, descending, bring from above Echoes of mercy, whispers of love.
Perfect submission, all is at rest, I in my Savior am happy and blest, Watching and waiting, looking above, Filled with His goodness, lost in His love.
I knew the words to every verse of this song as well as many other hymns from my childhood. I can’t explain it, but as these hymns and choruses echoed in the night, I sensed the quiet embrace of God’s presence around me. I had an assurance that He was as close as my next breath and there would be joy in the morning.
“It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23 KJV
Thank you to my high school friend, Carolyn Oswald for reminding me that God brings joy in the morning through His whispers of love in our little victories and echoes of mercy in our failures.
The hymns remain powerful because they usually contain the Gospel. The words are rich with Jesus and why He is worthy of our worship. They remind us of who we are, what He did for us, and who He is!. I don’t want our children to lose the beauty of the hymns. Our pastor told our Worship Arts Pastor to sing “Come Thou Fount” every Sunday for the next month. Today was the first Sunday and it’s wonderful to see how the congregation responds to those older songs. And our elderly folks come alive when we sing them!