O God beyond all praising

Sung to the tune I more commonly associate with “I vow to thee, my country”.

I knew that if I kept going through my spotify playlists, I would definitely hit a seam of religious music. I’ve got a couple of playlists of old school hymns, and a couple of more recent praise and worship music. Today’s track comes from one of the playlists that Spotify autogenerates – I’ve always been pretty impressed by how it knows what tracks to group.

One of the best things I do when I am feeling anxious is listening to songs that come from long ago, and ones that reflect a truth that’s bigger than me. They kind of remind me that there is some perspective out there that is bigger than my perceptions at the time.

I’ve struggled with feeling anxious in the past, and I think that the current [redacted] situation has not been good for anyone’s mental health. So, how to keep it all in perspective?

Some of the things I’ve been doing recently has been thinking about the things I’m glad for, and celebrating the things that have been made weirdly easier by the way we’ve been living. One of the things that has been easier is contact with my family and friends whom I’m far from. Suddenly, video calls are common. Extremely so. Also, I’ve been doing more ‘going to church’ than I was before we locked down, because I can attend from my living room via youtube, in my PJs with a cup of tea.

And, because of the swirling vortex of anxiety about germs and contact, and the secondary storm of homesickness and missing loved ones, I’ve been listening to my old faithful hymns a bit more. It makes me feel closer to my parents, who have sung in church choirs for years. Some songs I can almost hear my dad’s voice singing the bass line and mum singing the alto, along with the music in my headphones.

“Then hear, O gracious Saviour,
accept the love we bring,
that we who know your favour
may serve you as our king;
and whether our tomorrows
be filled with good or ill,
we’ll triumph through our sorrows
and rise to bless you still:
to marvel at your beauty
and glory in your ways,
and make a joyful duty
our sacrifice of praise.”

Day 33.

Writing video:

O God Beyond all praising – this version sung by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir (which reminds me of the big productions I joined the orchestra for in the past – second viola).

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