Ash Wednesday & Lent Hymn

A calendar will call us to share with Christ in Lent,
to walk within the darkness: some drawn, yet others sent;
and here we sense contrition, an ashen cross we bear,
reminder that the fire of love of God is everywhere.

In many different places God’s people bear the strain
of human expectation as cruel norms constrain;
for each convention sealing another person’s fate
forgive, release, give freedom before it is too late.

We witness acts of hatred dressed up as self-defence,
where vengeance is the motive hid deep in self-pretence;
great God forgive those moments, when hate and human pride
leads to the domination of those we might deride.

As Christ you suffered torment, the torture and the hate,
yet on the cross forgave them, the ones who sealed your fate,
so as we kneel confessing complicity, we pray,
great God forgive humanity when selfishness holds sway.

Andrew Pratt 15/2/2020
Words © 2020 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England, http://www.stainer.co.uk.
Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd.

Tune: CRUGER (Thy hand, O God has guided)

The ancient path – a hymn for Lent

Word, wisdom, song: the grounding of creation;
a rhythmic, rhyming, rhythm from the past
that weaves a mystic saintliness of being,
compelling sense of God, un-built to last.

The ancient path will lead our footsteps forward,
the future beckons us – as yet unseen,
the lapping sea of love will yet enfold us,
for every way  we go the Christ has been.

The heavens that encompass us while waiting,
the gentle touch enfolding us in death,
this warming spirit deep within our being,
is intimate as every living breath.

At every crossing woven through our seeing,
our sensing of the myriad stars of light,
give glances of a God beyond our being
still standing high in love beyond death’s night.

Yet on and on the circle is still turning,
a rhythmic, rhyming rhythm from our past:
Words, wisdom, song, the grounding of creation:
encircling love will hold, will always last.
Andrew Pratt 6/6/2015 © Stainer & Bell Ltd 2015
Tune: INTERCESSOR

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