I am not a particularly religious person, have not attended a church service since the days of sunday school in my single digit years but I have recently been drawn towards the church as a place of sanctuary and somewhere I can go and sit by myself and reflect on life in general (well that was the church opened on a wednesday evening for some “quiet time” last few weeks I have been there it has been closed, but that is a different story for a different rant!)
As a child in school we always used to sing hymns in assembly and before the cigarettes turned my voice into a gravely mess I could hold a tune and enjoyed the hymns. One particular one has always stood out for me though, it is played at family funerals that I have been too and as a football fan it is played before the FA Cup final every year and that hymn is “Abide With Me”
The words are posted below and some of them really seem appropriate to my battle with depression and they always remind me of lost uncles and this in turn inspires me.
Abide with me; fast falls the eventide;
The darkness deepens; Lord with me abide.
When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, O abide with me.
Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day;
Earth’s joys grow dim; its glories pass away;
Change and decay in all around I see;
O Thou who changest not, abide with me.
Not a brief glance I beg, a passing word,
But as Thou dwell’st with Thy disciples, Lord,
Familiar, condescending, patient, free.
Come not to sojourn, but abide with me.
Come not in terrors, as the King of kings,
But kind and good, with healing in Thy wings;
Tears for all woes, a heart for every plea.
Come, Friend of sinners, thus abide with me.
Thou on my head in early youth didst smile,
And though rebellious and perverse meanwhile,
Thou hast not left me, oft as I left Thee.
On to the close, O Lord, abide with me.
I need Thy presence every passing hour.
What but Thy grace can foil the tempter’s power?
Who, like Thyself, my guide and stay can be?
Through cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me.
I fear no foe, with Thee at hand to bless;
Ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness.
Where is death’s sting? Where, grave, thy victory?
I triumph still, if Thou abide with me.
Hold Thou Thy cross before my closing eyes;
Shine through the gloom and point me to the skies.
Heaven’s morning breaks, and earth’s vain shadows flee;
In life, in death, O Lord, abide with me.
and although im sure I may have posted this video before you need to hear a rendition of this hymn performed by Emeli Sande (if you cant view the video go to youtube and try and view it in your country)
Just listening to this last night stopped me from drinking myself into a state!