Jan 26 2011

The Song of My Heart

Chimneys 115I have often told people that if I had to be stranded on a deserted island and could only have two books with me I’d choose the Bible and a hymn book.  God’s Word and the hymns of our faith have been my greatest source of instruction, comfort, joy and inspiration.  While looking through the hymnal we use at my church, The Chalice Hymnal, I came across a hymn I’ve never seen before.  It is called Mountain Brook with Rushing Waters and was written by William W. Reid, Jr.  I have no idea if it has a nice tune or not but I think those who read SeeingCreation.com will find, as I did, that the words have a tremendous message.  The four verses of this hymn read:

Mountain brook with rushing waters, eagle perched in lofty tree, flowering hillside in the springtime, white-tailed deer alert and free!  Beauty, beauty all around us!  Jubilate!  Sing for joy!  Help us, God, preserve earth’s splendor for tomorrow’s world to see.

Pure the water freshly flowing toward its ocean destiny, clean the air of God’s creation, rich the soil, the mine, the sea.  ‘Earth is good!’ God’s word proclaimed it.  Jubilate!  Sing for joy!  Save us, God, from wasteful living, from pollution’s tragedy.

Waving fields of wheat and barley, giant apples juicy red, cattle grazing in the pasture; by God’s bounty we are fed!  Well supplied the world around us!  Jubilate!  Sing for joy!  May no greed or warring madness scorch the earth or rob our bread.

Keep us faithful in the struggle to conserve earth’s threatened store as we fight to save the forest, clean the stream, protect the shore.  God and humans work together, Jubilate!  Sing for joy!  Partners working till as stewards we can say, ‘Earth’s good!’ once more.

I like all the references to nature in this hymn but especially appreciate the petitions included.  The song asks God to help us “preserve earth’s splendor for tomorrow’s world to see.”  In the second verse God is asked to save us “from wasteful living, from pollution’s tragedy.”  The petition in the third verse is “May no greed or warring madness scorch the earth or rob our bread.”  All three petitions are ones we ought to pray on a regular basis. 

I don’t know if this hymn gets sung in many churches or not.  I have a feeling it doesn’t.   I do know, however, that it is the song of my heart and suspect it is for many of you as well.  In the end it really doesn’t matter whether we sing this hymn or not.  What matters is that we live it.  May God help us all do just that!


(I took the image above a couple of weeks ago in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.)