Author: Karl Philipp Spitta (1801-1859) Composer: William James Kirkpatrick, 1882 (1838-1921)
1. Oh, how joyful is the hour When we, Lord, draw nigh to Thee, And the words of life and power From Thy holy lips receive. May we not in vain assemble ‘Round Thy word, O Lord, today; Into our hearts meek and humble Write the Word of Life, we pray!
2. At Thy feet, O Lord, we linger; Speak to us in accents clear! Let us hear Thy word so tender Eagerly with godly fear. Teach us follow Thy example; Teach us to devote our time; This so short a time, though ample For eternity sublime.
3. Teach us to escape destruction Through the power of Thy grace, All offense, with Thy instruction To forsake and to efface. And according to Thy pleasure Think and speak, endure and choose, Striving onward toward that treasure, As we have no time to lose.
4. Open, Lord, our understanding, As to Thy disciples there. May our hearts be e’er demanding Wisdom’s light with Thee to share. Heav’nly Light that oft has banished Many dark and dreary spots; Light, O Lord, in us replenish; In Thy light we stumble not.
5. And Love’s holy fire, we pray Thee, Pour into each spotless heart, That in joy or in affliction Ne’er from Thee we may depart. May we never feel encumbered With the cross that we must bear, Gladly leave in self-denial What Thy kingdom cannot share.
6. Let Thy word bring light and gladness, Strength and power to our heart; May it be the living motive Causing each to do his part. Help to store in careful keeping What this day we may receive; Manifest Thy healing power In all who Thy word believe.
Special thanks to the Apostolic Christians who diligently labored to keep their rich musical heritage alive when most other denominations forsook it in the challenging battle of changing cultures. Thanks be to those souls who labored to write and compose this treasure of praise, many now only known to GOD!