Saturday, December 2, 2017

227. A Grabby, Grubby Children's Hymn

Taking a break from my series of "litany hymns for times in the Christian life," here is a third entry in a series of "reverently silly children's hymns." Perhaps, if you put it together with this hymn and this hymn, you can see a theme developing. It's an attempt to address promises of Christ with common conditions in the life of a small child. The tune is KOCHER, by Justin H.
Knecht, 1799, which I found in Common Service Book (1917) with a version of "A Great and Mighty Wonder" that, wonder of wonders,
didn't end with a three-line refrain beginning, "Repeat the hymn again." That refrain was actually a fragment of a four-line stanza in the original poem, before the hymn was adapted to fit the tune ES IST EIN ROS. I think the CSB version is best, so in its honor, I am stealing its tune for this hymn.
Lord, grasp our grabbing fingers,
Embrace each clinging arm.
Give us a grip that lingers
On Your love, safe and warm.

Direct each restless digit
To point by faith at You.
Push into palms that fidget
Your promise, strong and true.

So, when our hands grow muddy
With guilt and deeds that hurt,
Your hands, once pierced and bloody,
Will wipe away our dirt.

Accept by grace our playing
And often straying hands.
Teach us, Your mercy weighing,
To bear its light demands.

No comments: