“My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed: I will sing and give praise. Awake up, my glory; awake, psaltery and harp: I myself will awake early. I will praise thee, O Lord, among the people: I will sing unto thee among the nations,” Psalm 57:7-9, King James Version (KJV)
Did you know some classical hymns are being removed from hymnals in churches of various denominations? From what I’ve been told, the lyrics in these hymns have been deemed as “not inclusive enough” for today’s social preferences.
Although I have no intentions of ignoring God as my heavenly Father or Jesus as the Son of God, I must say I prefer being referred to as a “child of God,” rather than a “son.” As a lover of the church in all its parts, I’d also like to hear words sung to help Christians to see themselves, not just as individuals, but also a vital part of the one Body of Christ.
With these thoughts in mind, along with my desire to keep the old favorites from being banned from worship services, I got out a hymn book to see if the words could be changed easily enough while keeping the general idea and melody. Starting with the classical hymn, “Rise Up, O Men of God, the following lyrics came to me, making me want to do more!
Awake, O Child of God
Awake, O child of God. Leave drowsiness behind!
Stir up your faith with prayer and hope. Keep Jesus on your mind.
Awake, O child of God. Get dressed in love and joy!
Be lifted in the Light of Christ no darkness can destroy.
Wake up, O child of God. Talk to the Lord in prayer.
Fill your thoughts with God’s good word. Pray always everywhere.
Awake, O child of God. Give glory to Christ’s name.
Forgive each other in Christ’s love. Surrender every blame.
Arise, O blessed of God. Stay strengthened in your search.
Come join together in Christ’s love and heal and build the church.
by Mary Harwell Sayler