The path is beaten, worn over what I assume has been decades. Its hardness is thanks to those who continually traverse this stretch between two villages. At times the way becomes treacherously narrow. As the rice grows and when the rains fail, the villagers pump water from the river on its north side into the thirsty fields. The water then flows back north to the river creating deep sink holes that could engulf a cow or two. But the road is firm, the ground solid because people keep walking.
The beautiful words and harmonies of "O Sacred Head" are blended into my childhood memories, my mother's beautiful alto voice paired with mine. I feel like I should be someone who loves hymns. I'm traditional, conservative. While hymns are beautiful and encourage me in my doctrine and faith, that learned in simplicity and repetition holds me through trials. While the depth and breadth of hymns leads me to contemplation, one word or phrase deep in meaning because of pondering, prayer, and repetition encourage me day in and day out.
I love the "shallow" worship songs most of my friends disdain.
The richness of repetition with prayer, the ease of meditating on one word or phrase, the chance to praise God for what He has done in my life and the lives of others each collide as I sing "simple" songs in corporate worship (and watch others sing):
There is power in the name of Jesus - This is truth.
There is power in the name of Jesus - I never thought I would break that sinful habit, but thank You, Lord, for breaking it for me!
There is power in the name of Jesus - "Look around you, kids. See how many people know this to be true.
To break every chain - freedom from addiction
To break every chain - freedom from past hurts
To break every chain - sin and death have no power over me. I'm so grateful, Lord!
To break every chain - Break the chain of pornography in his life, Lord.
To break every chain - Thank You for freeing her from her past, Father, for being the Father she needed and giving her children the chance to end that terrible cycle of abuse.
To break every chain - Help this child to know you can break EVERY chain, God.
There is power, wonder-working power, in His Name - We, your church, your bride, have known this truth throughout the ages. Thank you, Lord, for the hymns of the past.
Below are some articles and blogs on this subject that I found helpful