Tune My Heart to Sing Thy Praise
My mind worked all night. Random thoughts of things I needed to do, plans I needed to make and things I wished were behind me crowded my restless night.
I rose and thought, peace, LORD, give me peace today. Let those things take their place, but fill my mind and heart with you today.
Then this song came to my mind, ‘Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing’ by Robert Robinson. I love the history behind songs, so I looked it up. This man was trained to be a barber. He was sent to apprentice, lived a ‘wandering life’ then heard the preaching of George Whitefield. He was transformed by grace. He later himself became a preacher and wrote this song. I found the version with all of the stanzas and find as some surmised, perhaps this song is a little biographical, but it speaks to our hearts and minds…we are all at times prone to wander…
Come, Thou Fount of every blessing,
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace;
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
Call for songs of loudest praise.
Teach me some melodious sonnet,
Sung by flaming tongues above.
Praise the mount! I’m fixed upon it,
Mount of Thy redeeming love.
Sorrowing I shall be in spirit,
Till released from flesh and sin,
Yet from what I do inherit,
Here Thy praises I’ll begin;
Here I raise my Ebenezer;
Here by Thy great help I’ve come;
And I hope, by Thy good pleasure,
Safely to arrive at home.
Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wandering from the fold of God;
He, to rescue me from danger,
Interposed His precious blood;
How His kindness yet pursues me
Mortal tongue can never tell,
Clothed in flesh, till death shall loose me
I cannot proclaim it well.
O to grace how great a debtor
Daily I’m constrained to be!
Let Thy goodness, like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.
O that day when freed from sinning,
I shall see Thy lovely face;
Clothed then in blood washed linen
How I’ll sing Thy sovereign grace;
Come, my Lord, no longer tarry,
Take my ransomed soul away;
Send thine angels now to carry
Me to realms of endless day.
The first phrase became my prayer this morning…then as I read the remainder of the song – became my own heart’s sonnet.
Isn’t it reassuring that ‘streams of mercy never ceasing’ come from God. He who knows us fully and completely – never ceases to give us his grace, peace, love and mercy.
“Here I raise my Ebenezer” has more depth of meaning when you understand – he’s referencing “stone of help” the definition of Ebenezer from I Samuel 7:12, “Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Jeshanah, and named it Ebenezer; for he said, ‘Thus far the Lord has helped us.’” Just like Samuel we can all raise in our hearts toward God our earnest desire for help – and He will answer.
The lovely phrase, “Jesus sought me when a stranger…how his kindness yet pursues me…” Jesus clothed us in His righteousness when He offered the gift of salvation to us. But, he didn’t leave us there – we are lovingly pursued to continue to grow, to love and to understand His grace.
I think each day we have to take our hearts and minds and present them to the LORD as in the fourth stanza. We offer our days and our lives to him to do as He wills. What a joy to realize each day is an opportunity – but, we have to sort through, leave behind those things that cloud, that clutter our hearts and minds so that we may see and we may focus.
Oh, how wonderful it is to have a relationship with God who wipes away the noise of life to reveal his love toward us, to give our hearts peace and joy each day. The daily noise and clutter of life will continue to attempt to draw our attention…but, we can turn, lift our hearts and minds to God and be gifted with His peace, mercy and joy.
Today, those things that cluttered my restless night are not gone, I still have to manage them, but, today, my heart and minds is transformed to sing His praises.