Thursday, October 8, 2009

Joyful Joyful

Last year I recorded The Silent Stars Christmas EP. This year I am adding 4 new songs and making it into a full record. I have enjoyed this whole process much more than I knew I would and probably my favorite part has been reinterpreting old hymns. There is so much depth to some of these old hymns. One of the songs I added this year includes verses from Joyful Joyful We Adore Thee. I love this quote from the author of the lyrics, Henry Van Dyke:

"These verses are simple expresions of common Christian feelings and desires in this present time—hymns of today that may be sung together by people who know the thought of the age, and are not afraid that any truth of science will de stroy religion, or any revolution on earth overthrow the kingdom of heaven. Therefore this is a hymn of trust and joy and hope."

Joyful, joyful, we adore Thee, God of glory, Lord of love;
Hearts unfold like flowers before Thee, opening to the sun above.
Melt the clouds of sin and sadness; drive the dark of doubt away;
Giver of immortal gladness, fill us with the light of day!

All Thy works with joy surround Thee, earth and heaven reflect Thy rays,
Stars and angels sing around Thee, center of unbroken praise.
Field and forest, vale and mountain, flowery meadow, flashing sea,
Singing bird and flowing fountain call us to rejoice in Thee.

Thou art giving and forgiving, ever blessing, ever blessed,
Wellspring of the joy of living, ocean depth of happy rest!
Thou our Father, Christ our Brother, all who live in love are Thine;
Teach us how to love each other, lift us to the joy divine.

Mortals, join the happy chorus, which the morning stars began;
Father love is reigning o’er us, brother love binds man to man.
Ever singing, march we onward, victors in the midst of strife,
Joyful music leads us Sunward in the triumph song of life.


Nelson from Garland, Texas said...

Love that song! We definitely sing that song at midnight Mass on Christmas Eve. Can't wait to hear your version.

Jenna Davis said...

Why do I not have this Christmas EP from last year?

robert said...

Glad to see the words of Henry van Dyke's hymn posted. (Today is actually the 157th anniversary of his birth.) If you' like to know a bit more about how the song came to be written, I invite you to check out my daily blog, Wordwise Hymns.

I agree that many of the old hymns have a depth of insight and Bible truth that is missing from a lot of contemporary songs. We can make use of the best of the new, but I encourage churches to hold on to our heritage and not abandon the hymn book.