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Notes on the Notes – January 17, 2021

This week’s music:

“New Every Morning” (VU #405)  

“New every morning is the love our wakening and uprising prove;
Through sleep and darkness safely brought,

Restored to life, and power, and thought.

New mercies each returning day hover around us while we pray;
New perils past, new sins forgiven,
New thought of God, new hopes of heaven.

If on our daily course our mind be set to hallow all we find,
New treasures still of countless price God will provide for sacrifice.

The trivial round, the common task, will furnish all we ought to ask,
Room to deny ourselves, a road to bring us daily nearer God.

Only, O God, in your dear love fit us for perfect rest above;
And help us, this and every day, to live more nearly as we pray.”

The words for this hymn are taken from a poem by John Keble, written in 1822. The poem was based on Lamentations 3:22-23. The tune, MELCOMBE, was composed by Samuel Webbe in 1782.

“Will You Come and Follow Me” (VU #567)

This hymn, also known as “The Summons” was written by John Bell of the Iona Community.  The first three verses contain the questions that Jesus poses to us –

“Will you come and follow me if I but call your name?
Will you go where you don’t know and never be the same?
Will you let my love be shown, will you let my name be know,
Will you let my life be grown in you and you in me?

Will you leave yourself behind if I but call your name?
Will you care for cruel and kind and never be the same?
Will you risk the hostile stare should your life attract or scare?
Will you let me answer prayer in you and you in me?

Will you love the “you” you hide if I but call your name?
Will you quell the fear inside and never be the same?
Will you use the faith you’ve found to reshape the world around,
Through my sight and touch and sound in you and you in me?

Jesus’ questions involve taking personal risks as well as risks in the world as his followers.  Being a follower of Jesus also requires a change in us, both in attitude and in action.

The final verse of the hymn is our answer – our commitment to move forward with Christ and never be the same:

“Christ, your summons echoes true when you but call my name.
Let me turn and follow you and never be the same.
In your company I’ll go where your love and footsteps show.
Thus I’ll move and live and grow in you and you in me.”

The tune is the traditional Scottish tune KELINGROVE, which is the same tune as the hymn “Will You Come and See the Light” another hymn about making choices to follow Jesus, which we used in worship last week.

Hear the hymn sung by Robert Kochis at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V0aAkOe87mo

“Servant Song”

“What do you want of me, Lord?
Where do you want me to serve you?
Where can I sing your praises?
I am your song.

I hear you call my name, Lord,
And I am moved within me.
Your Spirit stirs my deepest self.
Sing your songs in me.

Jesus, Jesus, you are my Lord.
Jesus, Jesus, you are the way.

Above, below, and around me,
Before, behind, and all through me,
Your Spirit burns deep within me.
Fire my life with your love.

You are the light in my darkness.
You are my strength when I’m weary.
You give me sight when I’m blinded.
Come, see for me.

Jesus, Jesus, you are my Light.
Jesus, Jesus, you are the way.

I am your song and servant,
Singing your praise like Mary.
Surrendered to your Spirit,
‘Let it be done to me.’

Jesus, Jesus, ‘Let it be done to me.’
Jesus, Jesus, you are the way.”

This week’s anthem was written by Donna Marie McGargill with keyboard accompaniment by Craig S. Kinsbury (1984).

“Jesus Calls Us” (VU #562)

Jesus calls us, o’er the tumult of our life’s wild restless sea,
Day by day his clear voice sounding, saying, “Christian, follow me.”

Long ago apostles heard it by the Galilean lake,
Turned from home and toil and kindred, leaving all for Jesus’ sake.

Jesus calls us from the worship of the vain world’s golden store,
From each idol that would keep us, saying, “Christian, love me more.”

In our joys and in our sorrows, days of toil and hours of ease,
Still he calls, in cares and pleasures, “Christian, love me more than these.”

Jesus calls us: by your mercies, Saviour, may we hear your call,
Give our hearts to your obedience, serve and love you best of all.”

This hymn is based on Matthew 4:18-20, the calling of the first disciples of Jesus.  The words were written by Cecil Francis Alexander in 1852.  The melody, GALILEE, was composed for this text by William Herbert Jude in 1874.

The first verse of this hymn begins, “Jesus calls us o’er the tumult of our life’s wild, restless sea”—acknowledging the call of those first disciples by the Sea of Galilee.  A recurring theme is “Christian, love me more”—”Christian, love me more than these” —”serve and love thee best of all.”  Those words were inspired by John 21:15, where Jesus, after the resurrection, asked Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?”  The hymn therefore acknowledges Jesus’ claim, not only over the lives of those first four disciples, but over the lives of every Christian.  (Source:  Sermon Writer https://www.sermonwriter.com/hymn-stories/jesus-calls-us-oer-tumult/)

Hear the song on piano at:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vir9cxM1FGs

“I Have Decided to Follow Jesus”

“I have decided to follow Jesus,
I have decided to follow Jesus,
I have decided to follow Jesus,
No turning back, no turning back.”

This week we will be using the first verse of this hymn of commitment as our benediction response.  The hymn originated in India.  The lyrics are based on the last words of a man in Assam, north-east India, who along with his family was converted to Christianity in the middle of the 19th century through the efforts of a Welsh missionary. Called to renounce his faith by the village chief, the convert declared, “I have decided to follow Jesus.”    The formation of these words into a hymn is attributed to the Indian missionary Sadhu Sundar Singh.  The melody is also Indian, and entitled “ASSAM” after the region where the text originated.   

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