For a long time now the hymn book has become a sort of second Bible for me (although I’ve been borrowing it for perhaps too long!), as they sit together on my desk and move around the house under my arm. To read and to sing, the poetry inspires. I quote hymns now as often as I do passages. One of my favourite hymns, especially in this Easter time is…
Love divine, all loves excelling,
joy of heav’n, to earth come down,
fix in us thy humble dwelling,
all thy faithful mercies crown.
Jesu, thou art all compassion,
pure unbounded love thou art;
Visit us with thy salvation,
enter ev’ry trembling heart.
Breathe, O breathe thy loving Spirit
Into every troubled breast;
let us all in thee inherit,
let us find thy promised rest.
Take away the love of sinning,
Alpha and Omega be;
end of faith, as its beginning,
set our hearts at liberty.
Come, almighty to deliver,
Let us all thy grace receive;
suddenly return, and never,
never more thy temples leave.
Thee we would be always blessing,
Serve thee as thy hosts above;
pray, and praise thee without ceasing,
glory in thy perfect love.
Finish then thy new creation,
pure and spotless let us be;
let us see thy great salvation
perfectly restored in thee.
Changed from glory into glory,
till in heav’n we take our place,
till we cast our crowns before thee,
lost in wonder, love, and praise.