Sometimes I like to write out hymns in my own words. Because, though I sing them every week at church (and sometimes in between), I don’t always think about what I’m singing. I know the words, but I might not truly understand the message. So I write them in my own words. I personalize their depths of truth. I offer them as heartfelt prayers to my heavenly Father.
Recently I did this with Come, Thou Fount, a well-known hymn penned by Robert Robinson in 1758. I discovered two lesser-known verses to the hymn, and included those in my paraphrase, simply because of the depths of praise in their words.
So as you read through this, can I suggest that you offer it as your own prayer of praise? Read through it once, then read through it again, praying it in your own words to your Creator and Redeemer. He longs to hear your praises!
Oh Lord, fount of every blessing, come! Come, and tune my heart to sing of Your grace!
Your unceasing streams of mercy cry out to be wondrously praised in song. So teach me some melody, some sonnet, that the heavenly hosts sing before Your throne! Let me praise Your redeeming love, and remain fixed on You alone.
Until I am released from this flesh and my sinfulness, I am sorrowful in my spirit. And yet, I have such an inheritance! And from that inheritance, let my praises flow!
And so here, I shall raise my stone of victory. Right here, I stand by Your great help alone. And still, I have that sure hope that You will find pleasure in safely leading me from here, to my home above with You.
Because You sought me when I was yet a stranger to You. And You went after me when I was wandering far from Your sheepfold. And in order to rescue me from the danger I was in, You intervened, and shed Your own precious lifeblood for me.
And Your kindness pursues me still! My mortal tongue could never tell the whole of it. And my flesh, until it is released from mortality by death itself – it can never proclaim it well. Oh, how in debt I am to Your grace! I owe it more every day!
Oh, fount of every blessing, bind me ever closer to You! In Your goodness, shackle me to Your side! I am too inclined to wander! I am too eager to leave the God I love.
So here, take my heart. Seal it up. Keep it pure, and safe, until I reach Your heavenly courts. And on that day, when I am finally free from all of sin’s power – when I see Your lovely face, and wear Your blood-washed linen – how I will finally be able to sing Your great sovereign grace!
Come, Lord. Come, fount of all blessing! Tarry no longer. Come, take my ransomed soul home to You! Send your angels to carry me, bring me to the realm of endless day!
QUESTIONS for YOU: Do you have a favorite hymn of praise to God? Have you ever prayed out hymns in your own words?