We shared a sweet celebration of love with our church family last night at our Valentine Banquet. Delicious spaghetti dinner, beautiful decorations, happy kids, musical entertainment that wove together the beauty of romantic love and heavenly Love seamlessly. As I sat there with friends and family, my kids all a-smile as they cuddled on our knees or danced around the table, the music ministered to my soul. It was a reminder of all I have been so blessed with and an invitation to slow down and relish the joy of those blessings in that very moment. My belly may have been full of pasta and cake, but my heart was bursting with thanks! The music can be simple, familiar, even secular…but when delivered by talented folks whose hearts’ cry is to serve God and give Him the glory, it is indeed a feast for the soul!
Speaking of music, I leave you today with the lyrics of a hymn we will sing in our worship this morning (O Love That Will Not Let Me Go by George Matheson):
O Love that wilt not let me go,
I rest my weary soul in thee;
I give thee back the life I owe,
That in thine ocean depths its flow
May richer, fuller be.
O light that followest all my way,
I yield my flickering torch to thee;
My heart restores its borrowed ray,
That in thy sunshine’s blaze its day
May brighter, fairer be.
O Joy that seekest me through pain,
I cannot close my heart to thee;
I trace the rainbow through the rain,
And feel the promise is not vain,
That morn shall tearless be.
O Cross that liftest up my head,
I dare not ask to fly from thee;
I lay in dust life’s glory dead,
And from the ground there blossoms red
Life that shall endless be.
According to cyberhymnal.org, George Matheson had this to say about his song:
My hymn was composed in the manse of Innelan [Argyleshire, Scotland] on the evening of the 6th of June, 1882, when I was 40 years of age. I was alone in the manse at that time. It was the night of my sister’s marriage, and the rest of the family were staying overnight in Glasgow. Something happened to me, which was known only to myself, and which caused me the most severe mental suffering. The hymn was the fruit of that suffering. It was the quickest bit of work I ever did in my life. I had the impression of having it dictated to me by some inward voice rather than of working it out myself. I am quite sure that the whole work was completed in five minutes, and equally sure that it never received at my hands any retouching or correction. I have no natural gift of rhythm. All the other verses I have ever written are manufactured articles; this came like a dayspring from on high.
May Christ’s love be as a “dayspring from on high” to your heart this Valentine’s Day!