Saturday, February 14, 2015

Hymn For The Week: Day By Day

Hymn For The Week: Day By Day

Day by Day

Day by day, and with each passing moment,
Strength I find to meet my trials here;
Trusting in my Father’s wise bestowment,
I’ve no cause for worry or for fear.
He, whose heart is kind beyond all measure,
Gives unto each day what He deems best,
Lovingly its part of pain and pleasure,
Mingling toil with peace and rest.

Every day the Lord Himself is near me,
With a special mercy for each hour;
All my cares He fain would bear and cheer me,
He whose name is Counsellor and Pow’r.
The protection of His child and treasure
Is a charge that on Himself He laid;
“As thy days, thy strength shall be in measure,”
This the pledge to me He made.
Help me then, in every tribulation,
So to trust Thy promises, O Lord,
That I lose not faith’s sweet consolation,
Offered me within Thy holy Word.
Help me, Lord, when toil and trouble meeting,
E’er to take, as from a father’s hand,
One by one, the days, the moments fleeting,
Till with Christ the Lord I stand.

by Lina Sandell

Lina Sandell (1832-1903), the author of this hymn, was a Lutheran pastor's daughter in Froderyd, Sweden. She was a "daddy's girl" -very close to her father. As a child, she enjoyed playing quietly in her father's study as he worked.

Lina began writing hymns at an early age. Then, when she was 26 years old, tragedy struck. She and her father were passengers in a boat crossing Lake Vattern when the boat lurched and her father fell overboard. As Lina watched in horror, her father drowned before anyone could mount a rescue effort.

When tragedy strikes, some people allow it to destroy them, but Lina's faith saw her through the tragedy. Her grief gave her music a depth and sensitivity that had been missing earlier.

During her lifetime, Lina wrote 650 hymns. "Day by Day" is familiar to many English-speaking congregations. Many people will also recognize the hymn that begins with the words, "Children of the Heavenly Father"-a hymn of quiet assurance.

The hymn, "Day by Day,"offers that same kind of assurance. It speaks of finding strength to face trials-and having no cause for worry or for fear. It encourages us to love with the promise of "a special mercy for each hour" (v.2). It asks God's help in tribulation-to trust God's promises (v.3)-"till I reach the promised land."

This sort of song readily becomes popular, because it provides comfort to people in distress. That describes most of us at some time or another. We need strength to meet the trials that we encounter. We need the assurance that God is with us-and loves us- and will help us-even when our circumstances are grim. We need to know that God will hep us "till (we) reach the promised land." Those are the assurances that this hymn provides.

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