John Wesley – a Hymn and (interesting) Directions on How To Sing

Hymn: Thou Hidden Love of God

(via) http://rpo.library.utoronto.ca/
Wesley, John (1703 – 1791)
John Wesley

John Wesley (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

.
Thou hidden love of God, whose height,
Whose depth unfathom’d no man knows,
I see from far thy beauteous light,
Inly I sigh for thy repose;
My heart is pain’d, nor can it be
At rest, till it finds rest in thee.
Thy secret voice invites me still,
The sweetness of thy yoke to prove:
.
And fain I would: but tho’ my will
Seem fix’d, yet wide my passions rove;
Yet hindrances strew all the way;
I aim at thee, yet from thee stray.
‘Tis mercy all, that thou hast brought
My mind to seek her peace in thee;
Yet while I seek, but find thee not,
No peace my wand’ring soul shall see;
.
O when shall all my wand’rings end,
And all my steps to thee-ward tend!
Is there a thing beneath the sun
That strives with thee my heart to share?
Ah! tear it thence, and reign alone,
The Lord of ev’ry motion there;
Then shall my heart from earth be free,
When it hath found repose in thee.
.
O hide this self from me, that I
No more, but Christ in me may live;
My vile affections crucify,
Nor let one darling lust survive;
In all things nothing may I see,
Nothing desire or seek but thee.
O Love, thy sov’reign aid impart,
To save me from low-thoughted care:
.
Chase this self-will thro’ all my heart,
Thro’ all its latent mazes there:
Make me thy duteous child, that I
Ceaseless may Abba, Father, cry!
Ah no! ne’er will I backward turn:
Thine wholly, thine alone I am!
Thrice happy he who views with scorn
Earth’s toys, for thee his constant flame;
.
O help that I may never move
From the blest footsteps of thy love!
Each moment draw from earth away
My heart that lowly waits thy call:
Speak to my inmost soul, and say,
I am thy love, thy God, thy all!
To feel thy power, to hear thy voice,
To taste thy love, be all my choice.

Notes

36]Cf. 1 Cor. xv.45.Back to Line
Original Text: Charles and John Wesley, Psalms and Hymns (1738).
Publication Start Year: 1738
Editors: N. J. Endicott
RPO Edition: 2RP.1.666; RPO 1996-2000.
Rhyme:  ababcc

I. Learn these tunes before you learn any others; afterwards learn as many as you please.II. Sing them exactly as they are printed here, without altering or mending them at all; and if you have learned to sing them otherwise, unlearn it as soon as you can.III. Sing all. See that you join with the congregation as frequently as you can. Let not a single degree of weakness or weariness hinder you. If it is a cross to you, take it up, and you will find it a blessing.

IV. Sing lustily and with good courage. Beware of singing as if you were half dead, or half asleep; but lift up your voice with strength. Be no more afraid of your voice now, nor more ashamed of its being heard, then when you sung the songs of Satan.

V. Sing modestly. Do not bawl, so as to be heard above or distinct from the rest of the congregation, that you may not destroy the harmony; but strive to unite your voices together, so as to make one clear melodious sound.

VI. Sing in time. Whatever time is sung be sure to keep with it. Do not run before nor stay behind it; but attend close to the leading voices, and move therewith as exactly as you can; and take care not to sing to slow. This drawling way naturally steals on all who are lazy; and it is high time to drive it out from us, and sing all our tunes just as quick as we did at first.

VII. Above all sing spiritually. Have an eye to God in every word you sing. Aim at pleasing him more than yourself, or any other creature. In order to do this attend strictly to the sense of what you sing, and see that your heart is not carried away with the sound, but offered to God continually; so shall your singing be such as the Lord will approve here, and reward you when he cometh in the clouds of heaven.From John Wesley’s Select Hymns, 1761

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