Here are some of the treasures, just for your Worship Wednesday:
Lord of the Church, We Pray for our Renewing
1 Lord of the church, we pray for our renewing:
Christ over all, our undivided aim.
Fire of the Spirit, burn for our enduing,
wind of the Spirit, fan the living flame!
We turn to Christ amid our fear and failing,
the will that lacks the courage to be free,
the weary labours, all but unavailing,
to bring us nearer what a church should be.
2 Lord of the church, we seek a Father's blessing,
a true repentance and a faith restored,
a swift obedience and a new possessing,
filled with the Holy Spirit of the Lord!
We turn to Christ from all our restless striving,
unnumbered voices with a single prayer:
the living water for our souls' reviving,
in Christ to live, and love and serve and care.
3 Lord of the church, we long for our uniting,
true to one calling, by one vision stirred;
one cross proclaiming and one creed reciting,
one in the truth of Jesus and his word!
So lead us on; till toil and trouble ended,
one church triumphant one new song shall sing,
to praise his glory, risen and ascended,
Christ over all, the everlasting King!
Timothy Dudley-Smith (b.1926)
Text © Timothy Dudley-Smith in Europe (including UK and Ireland) and in all territories not controlled by Hope Publishing Company.
O CHRIST THE SAME, THROUGH ALL OUR STORY'S PAGES
O Christ the same through all our story's pages,
our loves and hopes, our failures and our fears;
eternal Lord, the King of all the ages,
unchanging still, amid the passing years:
O living Word, the source of all creation,
who spread the skies, and set the stars ablaze,
O Christ the same, who wrought our whole salvation,
we bring our thanks for all our yesterdays.
O Christ the same, the friend of sinners, sharing
our inmost thoughts, the secrets none can hide,
still as of old upon your body bearing
the marks of love, in triumph glorified:
O Son of Man, who stooped for us from heaven,
O Prince of life, in all your saving power,
O Christ the same, to whom our hearts are given,
we bring our thanks for this the present hour.
O Christ the same, secure within whose keeping
our lives and loves, our days and years remain,
Our work and rest, our waking and our sleeping,
our calm and storm, our pleasure and our pain:
O Lord of love, for all our joys and sorrows,
for all our hopes, when earth shall fade and flee,
O Christ the same, beyond our brief tomorrows,
we bring our thanks for all that is to be.
—Timothy Dudley-Smith, from A HOUSE OF PRAISE: COLLECTED HYMNS, 1961-2001, © 2003 Hope Publishing Company, Carol Stream, IL 60188, ISBN 0-916642-74-7. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
A solid antecommunion from Susan Peterson:
“I am the Vine; My Father is the Gardener.
Each branch that bears no fruit, He cuts away;
While every branch that yields good fruit, He trims and cleans,
So that it will still more produce each day.
Now you are clean because of My Word’s work in you.
Remain in Me, and I’ll remain in you.
Just as a branch without the vine can bear no fruit,
So you must stay in Me if you would bear fruit too.
“I am the Vine; if you, like branches, stay in Me
And I in you, you’ll bear much fruit in turn.
Apart from Me, you can accomplish naught for God;
You’re like a branch that withers and is burned.
But if you stay in Me and I in you each day,
Ask what you wish; it will be given you.
God will be glorified because you bear much fruit,
For thus you show yourselves to be disciples true.
“Just as the Father loves Me, so I love you too.
Obey My Word, and you’ll stay in My care,
Just as I too obey My Father God above,
And in His love remain fore’er and e’er.
I’ve told you this so that My joy may be in you,
And that your own joy may now overflow.
Here’s My command: Love others just as I’ve loved you;
To die for friends—this is the greatest love you’ll know.
“You are My friends if you do what I now command;
You’re not mere servants, knowing not My will.
I’ve called you friends, for everything I’ve learned from God,
I have made known, and now I tell you still.
You chose Me not, but I have chosen each of you,
To go and bear much fruit that will remain.
Then God will give you all you ask in My own Name.
Love one another; hear now My command again.”
Here's one to sing whenever you remember Constantine:
Above the hills of time the cross is gleaming,
Fair as the sun when night has turned to day;
And from it love’s pure light is richly streaming,
To cleanse the heart and banish sin away.
To this dear cross the eyes of men are turning,
Today as in the ages lost to sight;
And for Thee, O Christ, men’s hearts are yearning,
As shipwrecked seamen yearn for morning light.
The cross, O Christ, Thy wondrous love revealing,
Awakes our hearts as with the light of morn,
And pardon o’er our sinful spirits stealing,
Tells us that we, in Thee, have been reborn.
Like echoes to sweet temple bells replying
Our hearts, O Lord, make answer to Thy love;
And we will love Thee with a love undying,
Till we are gathered to Thy home above.
(Tune: Londonderry / Boyce-Tilman)
We shall go out with hope of resurrection,
We shall go out, from strength to strength go on,
We shall go out and tell our stories boldly,
Tales of a love that will not let us go.
We'll sing our songs of wrongs that can be righted,
We'll dream our dream of hurts that can be healed,
We'll weave a cloth of all the world united
Within the vision of a Christ who sets us free.
We'll give a voice to those who have not spoken,
We'll find the words for those whose lips are sealed,
We'll make the tunes for those who sing no longer,
Vibrating love alive in every heart.
We'll share our joy with those who are still weeping,
Chant hymns of strength for hearts that break in grief,
We'll leap and dance the resurrection story
Including all within the circles of our love.
Go Silent Friend
Go, silent friend,
your life has found its ending:
To dust returns your weary mortal frame.
God, who before birth called you into being,
Now calls you hence, his ascent still the same.
Go, silent friend,
your life in Christ is buried;
For you He lived and died and rose again.
Close by His side your promised place is waiting
Where, fully known, you shall with God remain.
Go, silent friend,
forgive us if we grieved you;
Safe now in heaven, kindly say our name.
Your life has touched us, that is why we mourn you;
Our lives without you cannot be the same.
Go, silent friend,
we do not grudge your glory;
Sing, sing with joy deep praises to your Lord.
You, who believed that Christ would come back for you,
Now celebrate that Jesus keeps his word.
© 1996 WGRG, Iona Community