Saturday, March 31, 2018

The Promised Land




"A land flowing with milk and honey." 
Exodus 3:8



Land Of Milk And Honey
Barb Suttie



I fled from Egypt's bondage,
I heard that help was near;
I cast my care on Jesus,
And He dispersed my fear:
I passed between the billows;
Walled up every hand,
I trusted to my Captain,
And sought the promised land.



(Refrain)
I am over, yes over
On Canaan's shore I stand;
I am over, yes, over,
In the promised land.

I sang a song of triumph
I shouted o'er and o'er;
And then pursued my journey,
For Canaan's happy shore:



The Approach To Mount Sinai
David Roberts
(1839)



I came to Sinai's mountain,
I trod the desert sand,
I drank at Horeb's fountain,
Seeking the promised land.



The spies brought back their message,
Some wept, some said, "We can";
The land was all 'twas promised,
But who would lead the van?
At last, my heart despairing,
Of entering with this band,
I cried aloud to Jesus,
To show the promised land.



The Ark Passes Over The Jordan
Jacques Joseph Tissot
(1896-1902)



Then, after weary marches,
And many a longing sigh,
I found the river crossing,
And saw the land was nigh:
The Lord looked down in mercy,
By faith I touched His hand,
I followed close beside Him,
And found the promised land.


And now my song of gladness
I'm singing day by day,
For fellowship with Jesus
Makes calm and bright my way;
I fear not for the morrow,
For His almighty hand
I know shall lead and keep me
In this, the promised land.





"The Promised Land"
Words by Joshua Gill
(1889)
Music by William J. Kirkpatrick

Friday, March 30, 2018

The Blood Upon The Door: Pesach/Passover 5778 - Good Friday 2018




"On the fourteenth day of the first month at twilight
is the Lord's Passover."
Leviticus 23:5




And There Was A Great Cry In Egypt
Arthur Hacker
(1898)




When the Lord passed over Egypt,
There was weeping everywhere,
For the angel smote the firstborn
Of each family dwelling there;
But some houses He passed over;
As His word had said before,
And death entered not the portals
Where the blood was on the door.

(Refrain)
Precious blood upon the door,
Saving blood upon the door;
O, my soul there is no danger,
When the blood is on the door.






We are in a land of danger;
And death lurks on every hand;
But that soul has perfect safety
Who obeys the Lord's command;
For secure in God's pavilion,
He can watch life's breakers roar;
For God's angels guard that dwelling
Where the blood is on the door.

(Refrain)


Not the blood of lambs or cattle,
Sprinkled over any part,
But the blood of Christ the Savior,
Can redeem a human heart;
Then when death those ties shall sever;
And we walk on earth no more,
We may live with Christ forever
If His blood is on the door.

(Refrain)



Jesus, King of Kings
Yongsung Kim



"It is common at this time of the year for Jewish
believers in Jesus to host special church events with
titles like, "Messiah in the Passover Seder"
During these presentations, which can draw many
hundreds of people, the teaching will point to 
Jesus/Yeshua, the Lamb of God, as the
centerpiece of the Passover.
He is the One who paved the way for a
deliverance even greater than the Exodus from Egypt.
He is the One whose blood redeems us from God's judgement.
He is the Passover Lamb!
So, during the meal, the participants look back to Exodus,
they look back to the Cross, and they celebrate
the Jewish roots of their faith."
-Michael L. Brown


"Not to us, O Lord, not to us but
to Your name give glory, for Your mercy
and loving-kindness and for the sake of
Your truth and faithfulness!"
Psalm 115:1



"The Blood Upon The Door"
Words by Johnson Oatman Jr.
Music by George C. Hugg

Thursday, March 29, 2018

The Last Blue Moon...Till 2020




This week's full moon, the second this month, is
known as the Full Sap Moon.  This will be the last
"blue moon" or the event of two full moon
  cycles in the same month until the year 2020.






In the language of my ancestors, the Cherokee Indians, the moon
in March is called, Anvyi, or the Windy Moon,  which traditionally 
 marked the beginning of the spring planting season.
Each spring the Cherokee planted enough crops to
provide food for two years.  They grew corn, squash,
melons, pumpkins, sunflower seeds, and many other vegetables.


Other names for this month's moon include the Crow Moon, 
 the Crust Moon,  the Sugar Moon, and  the Chaste Moon.
In Old English/Anglo Saxon this month's moon
 was known as the Lenten Moon.


All Praise To Thee, My God, This Night




"And God made the two great lights-
the greater light, the sun, to rule the day
and the lesser light, the moon, to rule the night."
Genesis 1:16




The second full moon of the month will occur on March 31st.



All praise to Thee, my God, this night,

For all the blessings of the light!

Keep me, O keep me, King of kings,

Beneath Thine own almighty wings.

O may my soul on Thee repose,

And with sweet sleep mine eyelids close,

Sleep that may me more vigorous make

To serve my God when I awake.



"All Praise To Thee, My God, This Night"
Words by Thomas Ken
(1674)
Music by Thomas Tallis

Give Me, O Lord, A Heart Of Grace






Give me, O lord, a heart of grace,
A voice of joy, a shining face,
That I may show, where'er I turn,
Thy love within my soul doth burn.

Though life be sweet and joy be dear;
Be in my mind a quiet fear,
A patient strength in pain and care,
An enmity to dark despair.

A tenderness for all that stray,
With strength to help them on the way,
A cheerfulness, a heav'nly mirth
Brightening my steps along the earth.









"Give Me, O Lord, A Heart Of Grace"
Words by Rosa Mulholland
(1886)
Music by Thomas B. Southgate
(1855)

Illustrations by Eloise Wilkin

Gethsemane





My Jesus, I would ne'er forget,
That hour I spent with Thee;
When there I saw Thy bloody sweat
In dark Gethsemane.


(Refrain)
I'll ne'er forget, I'll ne'er forget,
I'll ne'er forgetful be,
When there I saw Thy bloody sweat
In dark Gethsemane.


'Twas in that olive grove I felt
That Thou hadst died for me;
Alas, how great I saw my guilt
While in Gethsemane.

(Refrain)



Christ In Gethsemane
Hermann Clementz



I thought of how Thy heart did throb,
While "all" Thine own did flee,
And left Thee with the cruel mob,
In sad Gethsemane.

(Refrain)

'Twas there I felt my grief and shame
In oft forsaking Thee,
How precious was Thy very name
In dear Gethsemane.

(Refrain)

Should e'er our love to Thee grow cold,
And we forgetful be,
We'll call to mind Thy love untold
While in Gethsemane.

(Refrain)



Garden of Gethsemane
Jerusalem, Israel





"Gethsemane"
A song inspired by a visit to Gethsemane
Written by Edward P. Hammand
(1866)
Music by Asa Hall
(1869)







Wednesday, March 28, 2018

When Morning Gilds The Skies





"May the name of the Lord be praised."
Job 1:21




Sonora Desert Sunrise
Photograph by Saija Lehtonen




When morning gilds the skies my heart awaking cries:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Alike at work and prayer, to Jesus I repair:
May Jesus Christ be praised!

When you begin the day, O never fail to say,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
And at your work rejoice to sing with heart and voice,
May Jesus Christ be praised!

Whene'er the sweet church bell peals over hill and dell,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
O hark to what it sings, as joyously it rings,
May Jesus Christ be praised!

My tongue shall never tire of chanting with the choir,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
This song of sacred joy, it never seems to cloy,
May Jesus Christ be praised!

Does sadness fill my mind? A solace here I find,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Or fades my earthly bliss? My comfort still is this,
May Jesus Christ be praised!

To God, the Word, on high, the host of angels cry,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Let mortals, too, upraise their voice in hymns of praise,
May Jesus Christ be praised!

Be this at meals your grace, in every time and place;
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Be this, when day is past, of all thoughts the last,
May Jesus Christ be praised!

When mirth for music longs, this is my song of songs:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
When evening shadows fall, this rings my curfew call,
May Jesus Christ be praised!

When sleep her balm denies, my silent spirit sighs,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
When evil thoughts molest, with this I shield my breast,
May Jesus Christ be praised!

The night becomes as day when from the heart we say:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
The powers of darkness fear when this chant they hear:
May Jesus Christ be praised!

No lovelier antiphon in all high Heav'n is known
Than, Jesus Christ be praised!
There to the eternal Word the eternal psalm is heard:
May Jesus Christ be praised!

Let all the earth around ring joyous with the sound:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
In Heaven's eternal bliss the loveliest strain is this:
May Jesus Christ be praised!

Sing, suns and stars of space, sing, ye that see His face,
Sing, Jesus Christ be praised!
God's whole creation o'er, for aye and evermore
Shall Jesus Christ be praised!

In Heav'n's eternal bliss the loveliest strain is this,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Let earth, and sea and sky from depth to height reply,
May Jesus Christ be praised!

Be this, while life is mine, my canticle divine:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Sing this eternal song through all the ages long:
May Jesus Christ be praised!




Sonora Desert Sunset
Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum




"When Morning Gilds The Skies"
Translated from German to English by
 Edward Caswall in Formby's Catholic Hymns
(1854)
Robert S. Bridges in Yattendon Hymnal
(1899)
Music: Laudes Domini, Joseph Barnby
in Ancient Hymns and Modern
(1866)
Barnby wrote the tune specifically for this hymn.
Alternate tune: Old 122nd,

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Mysterious Presence Source Of All





"Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel,
from everlasting to everlasting.
Amen and Amen."
Psalm 41:13



Mysterious presence, source of all-
The world without, the soul within,
Fountain of life, O hear our call,
And pour Thy living waters in!



Blue Lake
Steamboat Springs, Colorado



Thou breathest in the rushing wind;
Thy Spirit stirs in leaf and flower;
Nor wilt Thou from the willing mind
Withhold Thy light and love and power.

Thy hand unseen to accents clear
Awoke the psalmist's trembling lyre,
And touched the lip of holy seer
With flame from Thine own altar fire.

That touch divine, still Lord, impart;
Still give the prophet's burning sword;
And, vocal in each waiting heart,
Let living psalms of praise be heard.



Ogalalla Wildflowers
Indian Peaks, Colorado





"Mysterious Presence Source Of All"
Words by Seth C. Beach
(1866)
Music by Herbert S, Oakeley

Fourth Sunday Meditation: Messiah! At Thy Glad Approach






"Lamb of God"
Tom Dubois





Messiah! at Thy glad approach
The howling winds are still;
Thy praises fill the lonely waste,
And breathe from every hill.

The incense of the spring ascends
Upon the morning gale;
Red o'er the hill the roses bloom,
The lilies in the vale.

Renewed, the earth a robe of light,
A robe of beauty wears;
And in new heav'ns a brighter Sun
Leads on the promised years.

Let Israel to the Prince of Peace
The loud hosanna sing;
With hallelujahs, and with hymns,
O Zion,  hail thy King.




Messiah! At Thy Glad Approach!
Words by Michael Bruce
(1764)
First published by Joshua Logan
in his "Poems"
(1781)
Music by Henry Ward Beecher
for "Plymouth Collection Of Hymns And Tunes"
(1855)







Saturday, March 24, 2018

The Song Of The Speedwell Fairy





Clear blue are the skies;
My petals are blue;
And beautiful too,
As the bluest of eyes.



There are many kinds of Speedwell;
this is the "Germander".



The heavens are high:
By the field-path I grow
Where wayfarers go,
And "Good speed" say I;

"See, here is a prize
Of wonderful worth:
A weed of the earth,
As blue as the skies!"






In America, an old-fashioned,  long-leafed variation of
Speedwell called Veronica is found in many heirloom gardens.
 Grown as a dependable border plant, these perennial flowers
with their lovely lilac spikes are a favorite of bees, 
butterflies, and hummingbirds.



Veronica Flowers



"The Song of the Speedwell Fairy"
Poem and Illustration by
Cecily Mary Barker