A Hymn for Meditation

hymnalJoyful, Joyful We Adore Thee

Joyful, joyful, we adore thee,
God of glory, Lord of love;
hearts unfold like flowers before thee,
opening to the sun above.
Melt the clouds of sin and sadness;
drive the dark of doubt away.
Giver of immortal gladness,
fill us with the light of day!

All thy works with joy surround thee,
earth and heaven reflect thy rays,
stars and angels sing around thee,
center of unbroken praise.
Field and forest, vale and mountain,
flowery meadow, flashing sea,
chanting bird and flowing fountain,
call us to rejoice in thee.

Thou art giving and forgiving,
ever blessing, ever blest,
well-spring of the joy of living,
ocean depth of happy rest!
Thou our Father, Christ our brother,
all who live in love are thine;
teach us how to love each other,
lift us to the joy divine.

 Mortals, join the mighty chorus
which the morning stars began;
love divine is reigning o’er us, b
inding all within its span.
Ever singing, march we onward,
victors in the midst of strife;
joyful music leads us sunward,
in the triumph song of life.

  • In verse 1 what is the darkness that is dispelled by God’s arrival? Have you ever doubted? Do you still have doubts? What do you think you should do about them?
  • Think about magnificent scenes that have filled you with awe. Read verse 2, and then rewrite the verse with your own scene. Take time to imagine that these elements of creation have voices you can hear. What are they saying?
  • Read verse 3 and then go back and read the first two lines again. What powers all this happiness?
  • What elements of a relationship with God are evoked in this verse? What do those aspects contribute to your relationship? Where are we to learn how to love each other?
  • Verse 4 is spoken to human beings, but to whom do the words point? What is the energy of the created universe? Why do human beings sing in triumph as this song ends?