Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Retuned Hymn for Pentecost - Spirit Divine, Inspire Our Prayer

Next Sunday, May 24th, is Pentecost ... one of my favorite weeks of the Church year. I appreciate the annual reminder that even Presbyterians can talk about the movement of God's Spirit!

This year our textual focus in worship is Romans 8:22-27, especially the verses 26 and 27: "Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words. And God, who searches the heart, knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God."

Looking for hymn texts that helped to highlight this particular ministry of the Holy Spirit--interceding on our behalf, aiding our prayer in our weakness, helping to align our prayers and our lives with the will of God--I came across this hymn: "Spirit Divine, Inspire Our Prayer."

It is an contemporary alteration of an 1829 hymn text by Andrew Reed, originally titled "Spirit Divine, Attend Our Prayers" (#407 in Glory to God), and I appreciated the few textual changes that I found in FaithAlive's recent hymnal, Lift Up Your Hearts (#617).

Inspired by the text, but not so much by either versions of Johann Cruger's lovely yet difficult-to-sing 17th century tune (see above hymnal references), I decided to try and set this text to a new tune that would be singable, flexible for different worship settings, and partner well with the text to communicate the message of the poetry.

Here's the outcome, my retuned version of "Spirit Divine, Inspire Our Prayer":

You can also view the leadsheet on GoogleDrive HERE.

You have my permission to use this version in worship, with attribution.

May the Spirit of truth move within you.