Sixth Sunday of Easter
May 17, 1998
|Acts 16:9-15||Paul follows God's call; Lydia responds to God's message||338: Where He Leads
396: O Jesus, I Have Promised
398: Jesus Calls Us
|Psalm 67||A "benediction"--a Good Word||662: Stand Up and Bless the
682: All Praise to Thee, My God, This Night
|Those who love Christ obey His teachings
Christ heals on the Sabbath
|467: Trust and Obey
513: Soldiers of Christ, Arise
|Revelation 21:10, 22-22:5||In God's holy city, God and the Lamb are the light||427: Where Cross the Crowded
Ways of Life
540: I Love Thy Kingdom, Lord
Words by William W. How
Music from Gesangbuch, Meiningen; harmony by Felix Mendelssohn
Tune Name: MUNICH
Let's start this week's feature with a little table:
|List 4 words directly associated with our Lord||List 4 words associated with carrying or delivering a message|
Put them together, and you have a good start for carrying the message of Christ. You also have the makings for this week's featured hymn. God gave William W. How great gifts of simplicity and artistry in his hymn writing. From solid, basic language of the Christian faith, How was able to craft hymns that delivered the Good News in ways that hold close, personal meaning for many worshipers.
O Word of God Incarnate is no exception. In it we find images of Christ
and images of the church; images of heaven and images of earth. We also find
themes of praise for God, timelessness of God, direction from God, and finally
oneness with God. All of this--in just four verses! Look for these in the
words of the hymn:
|1. O Word of God incarnate,
O Wisdom from on high,
O Truth unchanged, unchanging,
O Light of our dark sky:
we praise you for the radiance
that from the hallowed page,
a lantern to our footsteps,
shines on from age to age.
|2. The church from you, our Savior,
received the gift divine,
and still that light is lifted
o'er all the earth to shine.
It is the sacred vessel
where gems of truth are stored;
it is the heaven-drawn picture
of Christ, the living Word.
|3. The Scripture is a banner
before God's host unfurled;
it is a shining beacon
above the darkling world.
It is the chart and compass
that o'er life's surging tide,
mid mists and rocks and quicksands,
to you, O Christ, will guide.
|4. O make your church, dear Savior,
a lamp of purest gold,
to bear before the nations
your true light as of old.
O teach your wandering pilgrims
by this their path to trace,
till, clouds and darkness ended,
they see you face to face.
God never told us that we have to use confusing or obscure language to worship. Simple words and simple phrases convey the most important messages--God's love being the most important message of all. May we always seek to share God's message and witness to others in simple and meaningful ways.
For All the Saints, which appears at #711 of The United Methodist Hymnal, was also written by William W. How.
God bless you--
|Passages suggested are from The Revised Common Lectionary: Consultation on Common Texts (Abingdon Press, 1992) copyright © by the Consultation on Common Texts (CCT), P.O. Box 340003, Room 381, Nashville TN 37203-0003. Reprinted with permission of CCT.|