Friday, September 8, 2017

Speak through the earthquake, wind, and fire, O still, small Voice of calm.

We'll have to take this hymn, originally written as a protest against liturgical ceremony, out of context. I'm a big believer in liturgical ceremony's ability to influence the human mind and heart towards just the recollection this text rightly celebrates, with a fluency and beauty unparalleled in the hymnals.

Some may wish to pray this hymn for those suffering from natural disasters these days.

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 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; 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; interpreted by love.

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; 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; O still, small voice of calm!

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