“Drop thy still dews of quietness, till all our strivings cease…”

He says, “Be still, and know that I am God…”

Psalm 46:10
– mum and dad

One of the routine activities I do with my dad at his assisted living residence is listening to hymns. It is one of those experiences where the wonder of Internet search technology still blows me away.

  • “What would you like to hear?” I ask.
  • “Heaven came down, and glory fills my soul,” he will respond.
  • “What choir?” I will say.
  • “London Emmanuel,” he will respond (he sang with them a few times back in the day).

And so I plug a few keywords into Google, or YouTube, and in a matter of seconds dad is listening – and I can usually find the right choir too.

– we attended this, and dad was singing

The other day he selected “How Great Thou Art.” I found a recording from a London Billy Graham Crusade we had attended. I swear I could see myself singing, somewhere in the audience.

Yesterday I asked for his favorite hymn. “Dear Lord and Father,” he said. Then we listened together, some choir from Kings College singing their hearts out. The words grabbed me – “arrested me” is a better expression. I can’t think of a better blog entry for today than to ask you to read them as a prayer.

Lord knows we all need this as a devotional guide. – DEREK

Dear Lord and Father of mankind,
Forgive our foolish ways!
Reclothe us in our rightful mind,
In purer lives Thy service find,
In deeper reverence, praise.

In simple trust like theirs who heard
Beside the Syrian sea
The gracious calling of the Lord,
Let us, like them, without a word
Rise up and follow Thee.

O Sabbath rest by Galilee!
O calm of hills above,
Where Jesus knelt to share with Thee
The silence of eternity
Interpreted by love!

With that deep hush subduing all
Our words and works that drown
The tender whisper of Thy call,
As noiseless let Thy blessing fall
As fell Thy manna down.

Drop Thy still dews of quietness,
Till all our strivings cease;
Take from our souls the strain and stress,
And let our ordered lives confess
The beauty of Thy peace.

Breathe through the heats of our desire
Thy coolness and Thy balm;
Let sense be dumb, let flesh retire;
Speak through the earthquake, wind, and fire,
O still, small voice of calm.

Garrett Horder – adapted from Quaker John Greenleaf Whittier’s poem ‘The Brewing of Soma’ (1872) and published in Horder’s 1884 Congregational Hymns.

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