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Friday, Dec. 19, 2014

The Shepherd's Heart: Morning has broken!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Sitting in my office on one stormy morning, I took note of the dark clouds which had carried heavy rains, strong winds, and generally stormy weather through our area. At the west edge of the clouds, the overcast was clearing and sunny blue skies were visible. It brought a familiar song to mind.

"Morning has broken, like the first morning.

Blackbird has spoken, like the first bird.


Praise for the singing, praise for the morning,


Praise for them springing fresh from the Word.




Sweet the rain's new fall, sunlight from heaven.


Like the first dewfall, on the first grass.


Praise for the sweetness of the wet garden,


Sprung in completeness where His feet pass.




Mine is the sunlight, mine is the morning.


Born of the one light Eden saw play.


Praise with elation, praise every morning;


God's recreation of the new day.



Morning has broken, like the first morning.


Blackbird has spoken, like the first bird.


Praise for the singing, praise for the morning,


Praise for them springing fresh from the Word."

Made popular in the early 1970s by folk singer Cat Stevens, the song is much older than that. It was reportedly written in the early 20th century and first published in 1931 by Oxford University Press under the name of the original poem by Eleanor Farjeon: "A Morning Song (For the First Day of Spring)".

I think the song is particularly indicative of the way we should look at each new day, no matter what the skies may look like. It speaks of knowing true joy every day for what it is - a new day.

The poem speaks of giving praise for whatever each new day might bring. It even praises the rain with its "Praise for the sweetness of the wet garden, sprung in completeness where His feet pass."

And I like that the words speak of the hand of God in the recreation of each new day. If we listen closely and with open hearts and spirits, we will be reminded that we are dependent on the Creator for each new day; that our next breath is indeed a gift from God; that the very light of each day and the beauty of the blackbirds' song spring forth new each day from the Word -- Christ Himself.

If we reflect on the words of this wonderful hymn, we will come to realize that nothing just happens; that there is a Master Plan in place; that the wind, the dew, the grass and the flowers, and all that we see with each new sunrise, are all part of God's fabulous workmanship.

And we are invited by the author to praise that handiwork. Praise with elation. Praise every morning. Praise for the singing. Praise for the morning.

Morning has broken! Let us praise God in joyful celebration!



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BOB G. STEWART, Columnist
The Shepherd's Heart