“Have Thine Own Way, Lord” – old hymns, new ears

In the same way, the Spirit comes to help our weakness. We don’t know what we should pray, but the Spirit himself pleads our case with unexpressed groans. The one who searches hearts knows how the Spirit thinks, because he pleads for the saints, consistent with God’s will. We know that God works all things together for good for the ones who love God, for those who are called according to his purpose.

Romans 8:26-28

Good Sunday morning, everyone! First, I need to say a huge “thank you” to all those who responded to yesterday’s post (“Parent update – and some hard questions for God”). What you all had to write and say was so profound and so helpful that I will likely write a followup piece this week, highlighting the conversation that emerged.

This morning I am simply going to point to a couple of old hymns. Each evening, as my parents are getting ready for bed, I will sit at their piano, open one of their hymnbooks, and play two or three selections. My go-to’s are Glory to God (our wonderful current Presbyterian hymnal), the old Baptist Hymnbook I grew up with in the 60’s and 70’s, and Hymns for the Family of God.

What I play depends on A) is it a hymn I am familiar with? and B) is the music in a key signature I can handle? Sometimes I struggle with sight reading, but I am getting better over time.

So Saturday evening I turned a handful of pages and landed on “Have Thine Own Way, Lord!” and “Jesus, I Come.”

A couple of key phrases grabbed me; both, of course having to do with this difficult idea of submitting myself to God’s providence – God’s provision and care.

Hold over my being absolute sway
Filled with Thy spirit till all can see
Christ only always living in me

– Have Thine Own Way, Lord

Out of my bondage, sorrow and night,
Jesus, I come, Jesus, I come;
Into thy freedom, gladness, and light,
Jesus, I come to thee.
Out of my sickness into thy health,
Out of my want and into thy wealth,
Out of my sin and into thyself,
Jesus, I come to thee

– Jesus I come

Not just accepting, but living into. And of claiming such a focus and disposition for my parents, too. They are, after all, the ones who taught me so much about God’s love and grace.

Don’t forget to go to worship this morning! I will “see” you there – DEREK

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