November 30 – The Songs We Sing – “Great is Thy Faithfulness”

Read Lamentations 3:21-24

 “Great is Thy Faithfulness” is probably one of my favorite hymns.

It stirs memories from my childhood, singing while sitting in the second row on the piano side of the Sanctuary (where we sat every single Sunday).  This song also brings a memory to mind when sitting with a family years ago as they were saying goodbye to a family member who would be with Jesus soon and recalling the line “strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow” (from verse 2 of the hymn).  That line brought them comfort during that difficult season.  I can still hear the way certain pianists would play the hymn or the way one congregation might sing it slightly differently than another.  In our traditional venue, I am reminded of what the choir and orchestra sound like together as they lead this hymn during worship.

Music draws me into my relationship with Jesus in a deep personal way.  Music draws me to those that I sing with and becomes a unique connection that binds me to my faith.  I could probably sit here, typing away, sharing memories throughout my life and most all of them would be connected to a song somehow.  I am so grateful that God gave us music to express ourselves.  For me, in the best of times and the worst of times, it is music that brings me to the foot of the cross and allows me to communicate with our Lord and Savior.

Jeremiah, the writer of Lamentations, starts out chapter 3 crying out to God with a series of worry and concern.  However, when he gets to verse 21, he says this:

“Yet this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope.  Because of the Lord’s great love, we are not consumed for his compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.  I say to myself, ‘The Lord is my portion; therefore, I will wait for him.’”

Lamentations 3:21-24

Jeremiah never let go of hope.  He never doubted the truth that God’s compassion doesn’t fail and that, indeed, God is great and He is faithful.  No matter what is going on in our lives, through Christ, we have hope.  Hope never goes away.  It is new every morning.  God is faithful.  The words of the hymn are so very true: “all I have needed, Thy hand hath provided.”

Music is my outlet that brings me close to Jesus.  But it’s the lyrics, not the singing that draws me close to Him.  It’s the message behind the lyrics that speak deeply to my soul.  It’s the fact that I can rest in knowing that God is there.  He shows Himself to me through the creativity of this world.  Some of us see that most strongly in art, in nature, or in others.  It’s all part of His creation.  It all belongs to God and comes from God.  That brings me hope.  That brings me peace.  That is where I rest.  God is indeed active in our world.

Where do you see His faithfulness?

Heather Pasteur

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