Archive for the ‘hymnody’ Category
David Field has been blogging about Tom Wright’s book, “Surprised by Hope”, here (and in a number of other recent posts). He notes (I assume with approval) Wright’s proposed change to some words in the hymn, “O Lord my God, when I in awesome wonder…”. I’m pretty sure I’ve blogged about this before, though I can’t now find the post. I think that the word “awesome” is wildly inappropriate there and should be changed to the much more accurate “awestruck”. My wonder, is on the whole, fairly feeble.
Wright objects to a different line, though:
A suggested change to the misleading “and take me home” line in the great “How great thou art” hymn:
When Christ shall come, with shout of acclamation,
And heal this world, what joy shall fill my heart.
The wonderfully personal and intimate hope of being taken home is to be replaced with the much more general and abstract notion of healing. I understand Wright’s point, that the direction of travel is wrong, but I don’t think that this hymn should be blamed for that. Christ will bring us to our eternal home, this transformed, renewed and healed world. That it will be home seems to me to be at least as important as that it will be here. So (and this will come as no surprise to anyone) I shall continue to sing the original words.