I Am Thine, O Lord

This morning, in apostate Quaker tradition, my son sang in the choir at Lakeside Presbyterian Church.

I am Thine, O Lord, I have heard Thy voice.
And it told Thy love to me.
But I long to rise in the arms of faith
And be closer drawn to thee.

Draw me nearer, draw me nearer
Draw me near unto Thee.
I am Thine, O Lord, I am Thine, O Lord,
Draw me nearer, Lord, to Thee.

Consecrate me now to Thy service Lord,
By the power of grace divine.
Let my soul look up with a steadfast hope,
And my will be lost in Thine.

Draw me nearer, draw me nearer,
Draw me nearer unto Thee.
I am Thine, O Lord, I am Thine, O Lord,
Draw me nearer, Lord to Thee.

I am Thine, O Lord, I am Thine, O Lord,
Draw me nearer, Lord to Thee

I am Thine, O Lord.

He goes to the choir with a friend from school. The two boys were on the same soccer team in first grade and the other mom was trying to recruit another boy to go to their church choir with her son. Henry was a good candidate.

He likes going to choir practice after school on Wednesdays. I think that he really likes having a little playdate at his friend David's house after school, but he also likes singing. The choir director is good with children, she teaches some music theory and nice variety of songs. They only sing in church about three times a year, and it's free, except for a responsibility to bring snack twice in the year. A very nice combination for an afterschool activity.

This morning, I was, as usual, swelling with pride and love for my son, who knows all the words, sings loud enough to hear him, and is pretty well on pitch. I think this pride is common among parents. But it is even more amazing for me to hear him singing words of faith. Even if it's not Quaker-style vocal ministry, it is good religious education.

After the children sang, the pastor said a few words of welcome and then the opening hymn, Holy, Holy, Holy. I was reduced to tears, barely able to see the words in the hymnal. Silas was totally squirming amuck in the pew next to me, and I couldn't even do anything but sing and cry. I forget how much I like to sing in church, and how it is possible to experience the presence of God in a large community singing together.


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Blogger Linda said...

Hi Robin,
We've met at the Quakers and Educators talk at Berkeley Meeting and at Rise Up Singing at Quaker Center. I am moved to comment because I resonated to your comment about loving to sing in church. That's one thing I miss at Quaker Meeting,and why singing Sacred Harp is so important to me. I wouldn't change the unprogrammed nature of Meeting for anything, but nothing moves me the way singing does. I'm looking forward to FGC gathering, where I can combine my practices! Even if you don't take Paul's workshop, I hope you'll comve to the afternoon singings. The sense of community that develops there over the week is very special.

3/06/2006 7:32 PM  
Blogger Johan Maurer said...

Despite my comments on the "All of Me" song a while back on my blog, I too love singing. Reedwood Friends Church's choruses (and sometimes the hymns) take me to a very deep place. Even when they don't describe me perfectly, the words often become important aspirations for me.

3/08/2006 9:38 PM  
Blogger Robin M. said...

I probably should have mentioned that the experience resonates for me in part because of my own fond memories of singing in the Presbyterian church children's choir when I was Henry's age. My mother only took us to Sunday School occasionally, but we went to choir practice religiously.

Someday soon, I will write more about the effects of listening to bluegrass gospel songs on my spiritual journey in the last couple of years.

Hi Linda! Nice to hear from you here and to find your blog. I will almost certainly come to at least one afternoon sing. Are children invited? At least ones who already sing in a choir?

Johan, oh yes. For example, the hymn Holy Holy Holy, (God in three persons, blessed Trinity...) does not exactly fit my articulated theology, but the experience of singing together was a worshipful moment.

3/09/2006 8:35 PM  
Blogger Rebecca Sullivan said...


children definately are invited to afternoon or at least noon time sing becasue that is one of my practices is to go with my mom and sister and sing. this last year i was to busy eldering and this summer my mom will be to busy but i still hope to come to some.

hopefully i will see you guys there.


3/10/2006 6:13 PM  
Blogger Robin M. said...

Thanks Rebecca. Maybe this year, since your mom will be so busy, maybe you would be kind enough to show Henry and I where to go.

3/10/2006 8:16 PM  
Blogger Chris M. said...

And me too!!


3/14/2006 1:16 PM  

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