#22 How Great Thou Art. Christian Hymn based on a poem written 1885.
A blog about the songs we will sing would be greatly impoverished if it did not include some hymns and spiritual songs. God, the author and creator of all music and song, makes it clear that part of our worship to Him is to praise Him with song, making melody in out hearts and offering the sacrifice of our lips. Like all things God asks us to do, this is for our benefit. We have discussed how singing activates the vagus nerve which has a major impact on our well being and its stimulation is a significant contributor to happiness. As well as this when a congregation sings together it is a powerful act of unity and harmony, both of which are a reflection of the very nature of God.
For song #22 we travel back to a poem written by the Swede, Carl Boberg, in 1885 titled “O Store Gud” which in English translates O Mighty God. Boberg wrote the poem after walking home from an afternoon church service when a storm with lightning and thunder broke overhead. By the time he got home the storm had passed, the sky was blue, clear and washed and the birds were singing. He sat down and penned the words which later were set to music of a Swedish Folk Song. Over the next several decades the song bobbed about, Germany, Russia, Ukraine and India before arriving in the USA in the 1950s. Billy Graham heard the song, loved it and made it a signature song of his crusades.
How Great Thou Art comes in as the world’s second best known hymn after Amazing Grace, which we will get to in a later blog. Getting back to the beautiful How Great Thou Art, it is all about the wonder of God, how the natural world displays His power and greatness and how really our only response to the great power, mercy and love of God is to bow in humble adoration and proclaim My God, How Great Thou Art!
A quick google search will show that loads of people and choirs have recorded this song, Elvis Presley, Carrie Underwood and Susan Boyle are just a few. I have tried to find an upbeat acapella version of the song which showcases the wonder of God’s creation to share with you.How Great Thou Art – YouTube
This blog is dedicated to P. Not so long ago a lady from England and a lady from Australia attended a church service in Muizenberg, South Africa. How Great Thou Art was one of the hymns the congregation sang and P told me it was her favourite. So, P I am thinking of you. RIP.