An Oldie but a Goodie

I was chatting on FB with my favorite Aunt-in-Law this afternoon when the topic of hymns came up. I have always had an affinity for the old hymns. They really are powerful and have amazing stories of origin. While it wasn’t usually the accompaniment that captured me as I sang hymns at Ryan Baptist Church, I was taken in by the words. Like a lot of people, Amazing Grace was one of my first favorites.  While I, unlike the composer, have not taken part in the slave trade I still get what it means to say, “Amazing Grace, How Sweet that Sound that Saved a Wretch Like Me.”  I remember as a sixteen year old coming face to face with my own sin and understanding what it meant to be wretched, and I remember what it felt like to be washed over with grace.  Yeah, it was amazing.

While working at Falls Creek the summer after I became a Christian I ambled into the bookstore one afternoon and found this CD called Hymns in the House.  Now don’t laugh – I know it sounds hokey.  It WAS the 90s! The CD is a compilation of several favorite hymns put to dance music, sang by Crystal Lewis.  I loved it!  I finally had some cool music for these songs that I loved! 

Over the years I have come to love all kinds of worship music, but I don’t believe that contemporary worship music has to replace the old hymns.  I have been priveledged to be a part of some great churches that have ministered with all kinds of music.  Unfortunately, I’ve also seen some churches that struggled, literally, to their death in a power struggle between traditional and contemporary music.  Really though, I see that the issues with music were just a shadow of the real issue – a power struggle between young and old. 

Over the years, I have loved seeing how God has used music to minister to me and others.  How a song can cut to the heart of a matter, can say exactly what you wanted to but couldn’t find the right words, can usher you into worship . . .

So here are some of my favorites and a bit of the lyrics . . . enjoy!

*Rock of Ages  – “Rock of Ages, Cleft for me.  Let me hide myself in Thee . . .Nothing in my hand I bring, Simply to the cross I cling; Naked, come to Thee for dress; Helpless look to Thee for grace; Foul, I to the fountain fly; Wash me, Savior, or I die.

*It is Well – “My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!”

*Abide With Me – “Abide with me; fast falls the eventide;
The darkness deepens; Lord with me abide.
When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, O abide with me. ”

*Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing – “O to grace how great a debtor
Daily I’m constrained to be!
Let Thy goodness, like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.”

*When I Survey the Wondrous Cross –

Were the whole realm of nature mine,
That were a present far too small;
Love so amazing, so divine,
Demands my soul, my life, my all.”


2 thoughts on “An Oldie but a Goodie

  1. That is my favorite part of “It is well with my soul”!! Absolute favorite part! Sad thing? The melody does not lend to you really singing out those words.

    That section of “When I survey the wondrous cross” is my fav too! While traveling with Life Action Ministries, we sang an arrangement of this song. The ending was perfectly arranged for the word demands. Loved it.

    I’m gonna steal your idea and go blog about this.

  2. Is “It is Well” a hymn? Sorry. LOL Love them all. My favorite hymns have to be “For Those Tears I Died,” “Come Thy Fount,” and “When I Survey.” Have heard the Oh the Wondrous Cross. . . contemporary version of that hymn? LOVE IT. I think I may steal this blog post.

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