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Notes on the Notes – August 27, 2017

This week’s theme:

Truth and Power

This week’s music:

“Teach Me, God, to Wonder”(VU #299)

God is love“Teach me, God, to wonder, teach me, God, to see;
Let your world of beauty capture me.

Let me, God, be open, let me loving be;
Let your world of people speak to me.

Let me, God, be ready, let me be awake,
In your world of loving my place take.

Teach me, God, to know you, hear you when you speak,
See you in my neighbour when we meet.

Praise to you be given, love for you be lived,
Life be celebrated, joy you give.”

This song has words by Walter Farquharson (1973) and music by Ron Klusmeier (1974).  Through the 5 verses we are led from seeing the beauty in God’s creation to speaking of opening our hearts and being ready to share God’s love with all people of the earth.  We celebrate God’s love by living in love with others.

“Open My Eyes” (VU #343)open-the-eyes-of-my-heart-lord-300x202

“Open my eyes, that I may see glimpses of truth thou hast for me;
place in my hand the wonderful key that shall unclasp and set me free.
Silently now I wait for thee, ready, my God, thy will to see.
Open my eyes, illumine me, Spirit Divine!

Open my ears, that I may hear voices of truth thou sendest clear;
and while the wave-notes fall on my ear, everything false will disappear.
Silently now I wait for thee, ready, my God, thy will to see.
Open my ears, illumine me, Spirit Divine!

Open my mouth, and let me bear gladly the warm truth everywhere;
open my heart and let me prepare love with thy children thus to share.
Silently now I wait for thee, ready, my God, thy will to see.
Open my heart, illumine me, Spirit divine!”

Clara H. Scott (1841-1897) provides us with a hymn of consecration that has been sung for over 100 years.
The text of “Open My Eyes” was written in 1895 shortly before Scott’s death. Each stanza reveals an increasing receptiveness to the “Spirit divine.” Open eyes lead to “glimpses of truth.” Open ears lead to “voices of truth.” An open mouth leads to sharing the “warm truth everywhere.” An open heart leads to sharing “love to thy children.”
The image of open eyes is common in the Bible. In some cases, this is a sign of Christ’s healing power, as when Jesus gave sight to the blind man at the pool of Siloam in John 9. Closed eyes, on the other hand, could be a metaphor for avoiding the truth as in the case of John 12:40, a passage following the triumphal entry of Christ into Jerusalem and beginning his journey to the cross: “He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them.”
The image of open ears is also significant in the biblical witness. Matthew often reprises the theme “Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.” Closed ears become a metaphor for a lack of understanding.   While the eyes and the ears are receptive organs, the mouth has the capacity to project. The mouth may project “cursing and deceit and fraud” (Psalm 10:7), or it may be an organ that projects praise, as Psalm 51:15 exhorts us: “O Lord, open thou my lips; and my mouth shall show forth thy praise.”

Sing along with the choir at First United Methodist Church in Valdosta, Georgia at: https://youtu.be/71jExPuxRBY

“I Love to Tell the Story” (VU #343)

I love to tell the story of unseen things above,
Of Jesus and his glory, of Jesus and his love.
I love to tell the story, because I know ’tis true;I love to tell
It satisfies my longings as nothing else can do.

I love to tell the story, ’twill be my theme in glory,
To tell the old, old story of Jesus and his love.

I love to tell the story, more wonderful it seems
Than all the golden fancies of all our golden dreams.
I love to tell the story, for some have never heard
The message of salvation from God’s own holy Word.

I love to tell the story, for those who know it best
Seem hungering and thirsting to hear it like the rest.
And when, in scenes of glory, I sing the new, new song,
‘Twill be the old, old story that I have loved so long.”

Arabella Katherine Hankey (1834-1911) grew up in the family of a wealthy English banker associated with the evangelical wing of the Anglican Church. As a teenager she taught a girls’ Sunday school class. Later she traveled to South Africa to serve as a nurse and to assist her invalid brother.

While recovering from a lengthy illness of her own at age 30, she wrote a poem on the life of Christ. This poem had two sections, the first published in January 1866 and entitled The Story Wanted, the second published later that year in November under the title The Story Told. The hymn “I Love to Tell the Story” is drawn from stanzas in the second section. The text of the refrain was written by the composer of the music, William G. Fisher, in 1869.

Hear the Chuck Wagon Gang at: https://youtu.be/-xgbsC_zL50

Hear Eddy Arnold sing the hymn at: https://youtu.be/0BE_SryWgNY

Hear country singer Alan Jackson at: https://youtu.be/wpfsZZ9X5n8

“What a Friend We Have in Jesus” (VU #664)

“What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer!
O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.

Have we trials and temptations? Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged, take it to the Lord in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful, who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness, take it to the Lord in prayer.

Are we weak and heavy laden, cumbered with a load of care?
Christ the Saviour is our refuge; take it to the Lord in prayer.
Do our friends despise, forsake us? Are we tempted to despair?
Jesus’ strength will shield our weakness, and we’ll find new courage there.”

The words for this hymn were originally written by Joseph M. Scriven in 1855 as a poem to comfort his ill mother who was living in Ireland while he was in Canada.  He could not return to be with her, so he wrote a letter of comfort and enclosed this poem.   Years later, one of Joseph’s friends discovered his poems and they were published in a book called Hymns and Other verses.”  The tune to the hymn was composed by Charles Crozat Converse in 1868.

Hear the country singer, Alan Jackson at:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X35JDIdQF5A

Watch a video about the creation of the hymn at:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tKjUoE2fack

Hear the Voice of Praise Quartet at:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4XRmGEbH0qs

A big “Thank You!” to our friends from

Prince of Peace for once again sharing

summer worship with us!

 

 

 

Categories: Notes on the Notes