Saturday, July 19, 2008

Joy in the morning

If there's any better way to start a Saturday morning then to hear that you're going to be the grandfather to twins come January, I don't know what it would be.

My face is frozen in a semi-permanent grin, and my brain is famished for words at the moment.


Peggy Senger Parsons said...

Mazel Tov!
It is a very nice flavor of Joy. I myself, will be grandmother for the first time come Thanksgiving.

Sacred Harp has great songs for the passing of a loved one. What will you call for over the birth of a child/children?


Paul L said...

And blessings on you too, you motorcycle-riding grand-mama, you. (Do they make infant seats for your model?)

I can't immediately recall any Sacred Harp songs that are traditionally sung on the birth of a child. Of course, the birth of the Holy Child is always inspirational and would be appropriate for the birth of any holy child, such as Milford (273):

If angels sung a Savior’s birth,
On that auspicious morn,
We well may imitate their mirth,
Now He again is born.

On the whole, while there are many joyful songs, they're about true, eternal joy and not the fleeting sentimentality that often passes itself off as joy. The Sacred Harp in general is a pretty sober, realistic book. Even a song with the promising title of Ecstasy (106) refers to the spiritual ecstasy of heaven:

Oh, when shall I see Jesus,
And reign with Him above?
And from the flowing fountain
Drink everlasting love?


Oh had I wings,
I would fly away and be at rest,
And I’d praise God in His bright abode.

Whene’er you meet with troubles
And trials on your way,
Then cast your care on Jesus
And don’t forget to pray.


Gird on the gospel armor
Of faith and hope and love,
And when the combat’s ended,
He’ll carry you above.


Oh, do not be discouraged,
For Jesus is your friend;
And if you lack for knowledge,
He’ll not refuse to lend.


Neither will He upbraid you,
Though often you request;
He’ll give you grace to conquer,
And take you home to rest.

It isn't uncommon for singers to ask for such realistic songs on their birthdays, such as Fleeting Days (348 bottom):

Time! what an empty vapor ’tis!
Our days, how swift they are,
Swift as an Indian arrow flies,
Or like a shooting star.

Our life is ever on the wing,
And death is ever nigh;
The moment when our lives begin,
We all begin to die.

Or "Morning Sun" (436):

Youth, like the spring, will soon be gone,
By fleeting time or conqu’ring death;
Your morning sun may set at noon,
And leave you ever in the dark.
Your sparkling eyes and blooming cheeks
Must wither like the blasted rose;
The coffin, earth, and winding sheet
Will soon your active limbs enclose.

But at the moment, this favorite first verse of Africa (178) is the one that's on my lips:

Now shall my inward joys arise,
And burst into a song;
Almighty love inspires my heart,
And pleasure tunes my tongue.

Liz Opp said...

How exciting! And somewhat timely, too, after the passing of Barbara and your recent Colorado memorial of her...

Liz Opp, The Good Raised Up

Linda said...

What lovely and exciting news!

Chris M. said...

Yes, congratulations!

As I recall, someone (Robert?) called "Morning Sun" (436) at the FGC Gathering this year when a father and baby stopped by to listen for a while.