It's past my bedtime, and I thought I'd burn the last bit of oil by sharing my wrap up music for the first day of the last month of 2008 AD. This song has an odd genesis, with its lyrics originally being pinned by Isaac Watts and known as "Hymn 39," but when it entered the rural hymnal that is the Sacred Harp
, it became known by it's tune, "Africa." (No clue why "Africa." There is nothing about Africa in the song.) I first heard it when my brethren in Sojourn Music sang it to our church a few weeks ago. Learning that that version was The Innocence Mission's interpretation, I immediately plopped my $.99 on Steve Job's barrel head and made my best purchase that week.
Now shall my inward joys arise,
And burst into a song;
Almighty love inspires my heart,
And pleasure tunes my tongue.
God on his thirsty Zion hill
Some mercy drops has thrown,
And solemn oaths have bound his love
To shower salvation down.
Why do we then indulge our fears,
Suspicions, and complaints?
Is he a God, and shall his grace
Grow weary of his saints?
Man. Is he a God? What a question to ask and immediately answer. Pleasure tunes my tongue? Now that's Christian Hedonism. This song rocks me and socks me with Watt's confidence in Christ. "Abraham believed God." In the face of everything in this world, in the face of all the lies that the satanic trinity (world, flesh, devil) fumes, what power is there in simply trusting in our loving Father? "Why do we then indulge our fears, suspicions and complaints? Is he a God, and shall his grace grow weary of his saints?" The Scripture tells us he has loved us with an everlasting love. What wondrous love is this, oh my soul!
Labels: Isaac Watts, reflection, Sacred Harp, The Innocence Mission