O dread and sovereign Lord,
Where is this you brought us?
To Sinai, hard and scorched,
Tornado-winds and cloud,
Around Your person shroud,
With trumpet blasting loud.
Your voice in power roaring,
When Moses shook and trembled.
O dread and sovereign Lord.
O great and gracious Lord,
Is this where You brought us?
To Zion’s heavenly court,
With angels feasting.
Your throne on crystal sea,
Your face at last we see,
O Christ, unceasingly.
The Church of the firstborn,
With Jesus blood be-sprinkled.
O great and gracious Lord.
I think I know how Joseph felt,
When first he held our Lord and knelt,
Divinity held in his hands,
And he a sinful, simple man.
As Joseph looked upon that babe,
He felt unworthy and dismayed.
His failures stood out sheer and black,
Reminding him of all he lacked.
What fear at this entrusted Christ!
Yet God said Joseph would suffice.
He knew his every failing short,
Yet made him father of our Lord.
And though I do not hold the Christ,
When I look in my infant’s eyes,
I fear what Joseph understood:
That I will fail in fatherhood.
Yet Joseph had some comfort when,
He knew his son was without sin.
No failure or paternal lack,
Would turn Christ from His Father’s task.
Yet I have no such certainty,
My son and I are both guilty.
So when I fail, will he fail, too?
With both of us betraying You?
How can two failures glorify,
The name of Him who sits on High?
O Lord, anoint my shrinking heart,
And make me faithful to my part.
Fill up in me my weaknesses,
Let failings be Your witnesses,
To show my son your Son of grace,
That he will trust You all his days.
Lord, Thou hast called me by Thy grace,
Redeeming me from judgment’s hand,
Thy call to me has given place,
To call my children from the damned.
I trust Thy will to do,
Will save my family too.
Lord, give me strength to teach Thy ways,
And not neglect Thy clear command,
Not presupposing on Thy grace,
But training them with humble hands.
My greatest joy to see,
My children trusting Thee.
Lord, guide me to be quick to hear,
And follow in Thy sanctity,
That all my children, ever near,
May learn by what they see in me.
Oh, keep me in Thy ways,
That they not learn to stray!
Lord, when your enemy appears,
Within the house Thou gavest me,
Make strong my hands to crush and clear,
Those things which turn their hearts from Thee.
Lord, guide my hands to war,
Keep nothing left in store.
Lord, do not let my faith stagnate,
Regeneration ends in me.
But as headwaters that create,
A progeny that follows Thee.
For many generations still,
My offspring following Thy will.