Thursday, January 6, 2011

Hymn of the Month -- How Firm a Foundation

On a Sunday night in 1983 I watched a chilling movie called The Day After, about the effects of nuclear war on families and individuals.  I watched, bug-eyed, transfixed, as people's hopes and dreams, their very lives, were shattered or lost altogether.  It was a bleak, hopeless movie... until the credits began to roll and the music began.  Rising from the rubble came the strains of How Firm a Foundation!

The truth is, there is hope even in the devastation of war.  And that hope is the firm foundation we have in God's Word.  I had me a little praise session there in my living room, rejoicing in God's faithfulness.  It continued the next day as I drove to an appointment.  At the top of my lungs I sang every verse of How Firm a Foundation.  I modulated between verses, going up a step and singing the next verse higher than the last.  When I finished the song I started over!  I sang my heart out that day, affirming the words of the song with each breath.

Here are the words.  Rejoice in their truth as you listen to it played.

How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,
  1. Is laid for your faith in His excellent word!
    What more can He say than to you He hath said—
    To you who for refuge to Jesus have fled?
  2. “Fear not, I am with thee, oh, be not dismayed,
    For I am thy God, and will still give thee aid;
    I’ll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand,
    Upheld by My gracious, omnipotent hand.
  3. “When through the deep waters I call thee to go,
    The rivers of sorrow shall not overflow;
    For I will be with thee thy trouble to bless,
    And sanctify to thee thy deepest distress.
  4. “When through fiery trials thy pathway shall lie,
    My grace, all-sufficient, shall be thy supply;
    The flame shall not harm thee; I only design
    Thy dross to consume and thy gold to refine.
  5. “The soul that on Jesus doth lean for repose,
    I will not, I will not, desert to his foes;
    That soul, though all hell should endeavor to shake,
    I’ll never, no never, no never forsake.”

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