Sunday, September 07, 2014

Hymn-ful Sundays! "Here I am, Lord"

This week's hymn is another fairly contemporary one, written by Dan Schutte in 1981. Schutte was asked to write a song based on Isaiah 6, three days before the event at which it was to be sung. In combining his thoughts on Isaiah 6 with the story of God's call to Samuel, he came up with this song, Here I am Lord, also known as "I the Lord of Sea and Sky". He says that the song "tells of the God who overshadows us, giving power to our stumbling words and the simple works of our hands, and making them into something that can be a grace for people."

I, the Lord of sea and sky,
I have heard my people cry.
All who dwell in dark and sin
My hand will save.
I who make the stars of night,
I will make their darkness bright.
Who will bear my light to them?
Whom shall I send?

Here I am, Lord. Is it I Lord?
I have heard you calling in the night.
I will go, Lord, where you lead me.
I will hold your people in my heart.

I, the Lord of snow and rain,
I have borne my people’s pain.
I have wept for love of them.
They turn a-way.
I will break their hearts of stone,
Give them hearts for love a-lone.
I will speak my words to them.
Whom shall I send?

I, the Lord of wind and flame,
I will tend the poor and lame.
I will set a feast for them.
My hand will save.
Finest bread I will provide,
Till their hearts be satisfied.
I will give my life to them.
Whom shall I send?

Daniel Schutte

The combination of the responses of both Samuel and Isaiah to the Lord's call reminds us always that God is speaking, if we are listening. And the same God, the God of sea and sky, hears the cries of his people: those in bondage, in persecution, in depression, in fear. And who does He send to them? He sends us, trusting us to carry his love to the darkest places of the world. Will we answer Gods call?

Be blessed and hear God's voice!

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A person finds joy in giving an apt reply—
and how good is a timely word! -Prov 15:23