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Saturday

Sweet Hour of Prayer – Hearty Hymns from A to Z



How sweet is solitary prayer, when one’s own spirit is joined to the Lord’s in silence, speech, script, or song?

William W. Walford (1772-1850), a blind British preacher, wrote the lines to this well-known and sweetly devotional Christian hymn. 



Sweet hour of prayer! Sweet hour of prayer!
That calls me from a world of care,
And bids me at my Father's throne
Make all my wants and wishes known.
In seasons of distress and grief,
My soul has often found relief,
And oft escaped the tempter's snare
By thy return, sweet hour of prayer!

Sweet hour of prayer! sweet hour of prayer!
The joys I feel, the bliss I share
Of those whose anxious spirits burn
With strong desires for thy return!
With such I hasten to the place
Where God my Savior shows his face,
And gladly take my station there,
And wait for thee, sweet hour of prayer!

Sweet hour of prayer! sweet hour of prayer!
Thy wings shall my petition bear
To him whose truth and faithfulness
Engage the waiting soul to bless.
And since he bids me seek his face,
Believe his word, and trust his grace,
I'll cast on him my every care,
And wait for thee, sweet hour of prayer!

Sweet hour of prayer! sweet hour of prayer!
May I thy consolation share,
Till from Mount Pisgah's lofty height
I view my home and take my flight
This robe of flesh I'll drop, and rise
To seize the everlasting prize,
And shout, while passing thru the air,
"Farewell, farewell, sweet hour of prayer!"


Listen to Alan Jackson’s country music recording of “Sweet Hour of Prayer”:



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Friday

Redeemed, How I Love to Proclaim It – Hearty Hymns from A to Z



Here’s another familiar favorite from the classic hymn-writer Fanny Crosby (1820-1915). Although she was blind from infancy, Crosby displayed spiritual vision in the lyrics she penned.

 

Redeemed, how I love to proclaim it!
Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb;
redeemed through His infinite mercy,
His child, and forever I am.

Refrain:
Redeemed, redeemed,
redeemed by the blood of the Lamb;
redeemed, redeemed,
His child and forever I am.

Redeemed, and so happy in Jesus,
no language my rapture can tell;
I know that the light of His presence
With me doth continually dwell.

I think of my blessed Redeemer,
I think of Him all the day long;
I sing, for I cannot be silent;
His love is the theme of my song.

I know I shall see in His beauty
The King in whose way I delight;
Who lovingly guardeth my footsteps,
And giveth me songs in the night.


Listen to this version of “Redeemed, How I Love to Proclaim It,” as performed by the Gaithers and Friends:



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Thursday

Quiet Rest (Near to the Heart of God) – Hearty Hymns from A to Z



Written by Missouri Presbyterian clergyman Cleland Boyd McAfee (1866-1944) and set to a familiar tune known as “McAfee,” this hymn has comforted many generations of Christian believers.

There is a place of quiet rest,
near to the heart of God,
a place where sin cannot molest,
near to the heart of God.

Refrain:
O Jesus, blest Redeemer,
sent from the heart of God,
hold us, who wait before thee,
near to the heart of God.

There is a place of comfort sweet,
near to the heart of God,
a place where we our Savior meet,
near to the heart of God.

There is a place of full release,
near to the heart of God,
a place where all is joy and peace,
near to the heart of God.



Listen to Andy Griffith’s version of “Quiet Rest” (“Near to the Heart of God”). Readers may remember Griffith (1926-2012) best as the star of the vintage television programs “The Andy Griffith Show” and “Mayberry R.F.D.” (from the 1960s). But Griffith was also a popular Gospel singer.






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