The Recovering Baptist had playing last night the most beautiful rendition of my favorite hymn, “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing.”
God, I just love that hymn. I like how it’s all “Teach me some melodious sonnet” right at the point where it’s gone from all plod, plod, plod, plod to a more melodious moment. I love how the longing in the hymn is just palpable.
And I think the last verse (at least the last verse in the Methodist hymnal–looking online I see that dear Robert Robinson did not know that one does not challenge the Wesleys for longest hymns in the hymnal. Shit like that will get your hymn cut down to four verses so fast your head will spin.) is some of the most amazing poetry in hymnody.
Check this out:
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.
You can’t get that kind of complexity across in a praise hymn. Shoot, I don’t even think you can fit that whole verse on an overhead projector.