Searing incandescent spirit – A hymn reflecting on John 13: 34 – 35

A hymn reflecting on John 13: 34 – 35 takes us, perhaps, toward Pentecost…

I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another.
By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.



Searing incandescent spirit, 
melting rock and churning foam, 
turning chaos into comfort 
formed the planet where we roam. 
Now we recollect the story 
of the cosmic photo-call 
when the universe was forming 
earth, the cradle of us all.


By this spirit prophets speaking 
challenged power and brought down thrones, 
pointed people to the Godhead, 
moved them from their comfort zones; 
turned their minds from selfish pleasure, 
marking wrong and putting right, 
led them from each ego's desert, 
from their introspective blight.


Now the spirit doused all people, 
no-one could escape this shower; 
sons and mothers, fathers, daughters, 
felt this rhythmic, dancing power; 
soon all nations heard the clamour, 
every language known on earth 
called to every nation living, 
join with love and find new-birth.


Andrew E Pratt; Words © 2015 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England copyright@stainer.co.uk . Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd.
Metre: 8 7 8 7 D
Tune: LUX EOI

Romans 13: 8 – 14 – Am I in debt? Meditation: Am I in debt?

Am I in debt?


Surely!


In debt for the love you have given me.
Undeserving, sometimes callous, thoughtless and cavalier with the expectations
of others. Yet I am loved.
And so I owe this debt of love.
How can it be paid?
How do I repay the patience of a nurse who stands by me while I am sick?
How do I return the love of a mother who invested her life in my life from birth
to her death?
How do I thank those people who affirm me in what I do, in writing and in
teaching?
How do I thank the teacher who told me, but then demonstrated that from his
point of view there was some good in everyone?
How do I thank my son for music, art and an openness of spirit?
How do I thank colleagues who have stood by and encouraged me as my life has
changed pace and direction often giving them more work to do?
How do I thank my wife for her care?
How do I thank the child who smiles and hugs me and says, ‘That’s better’?
How do I thank countless friends who have done the things that only they could
do?
How do I thank the father who taught me to work with wood?
So much to be thankful for!
Am I in debt?
Surely…

To each and all is owed a lifetime of love, so graciously given, so easily received.

No wonder he said, ‘Love one another”!
I’ll try, really I will.

Will you?

What is this love?

What is this love? Just this we know 
that love transcends all pomp and show, 
that love exists, above below, 
love was and is and is to be, 
by grace we are both loved and free.


What is this love? It precedes life, it overcomes all dark and strife, love is the Spirit’s keenest knife, pure love has brightness in its eyes, yet breathes forever, never dies.
Love is the interface of change, no difference rests beyond its range, its nature gracious, other, strange, it holds birth, death and all between, here all is safe: both hidden, seen.
Love is the point where hell is breached, where joy is glimpsed and heaven reached, the outcasts find they’re unimpeached, on this wide earth the lost are found for love is safe, is solid ground.
Andrew Pratt 17/4/2022

A hymn for Palm Sunday



To bring a city to its sense, a nation to its knees, they welcomed Nazareth's carpenter, waved palms cut from the trees. Hosanna filled the quiet air, they strained to glimpse a view; 'Messiah' they acclaimed this man whom Pharisees would sue. He turned the tables upside down, he spun their world around, he challenged preconceived ideas, flung hatred to the ground. This man had learnt too much, it seemed, knew ways of right and wrong, his ear attuned to righteousness sensed discord in their song. The politicians and the priests were threatened by this choice; the hypocrites would silence him, and still we shun his voice. Andrew Pratt Words © 2002 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England copyright@stainer.co.uk . Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd. Tune: FINGAL


A song and a hymn in Celebration of the 250th anniversary of the birth of Hugh Bourne one of the founders of Primitive Methodism 

For more information click here - the Celebration of the 250th anniversary of the birth of the birth of Hugh Bourne one of the founders of Primitive Methodism and the History of Primitive Methodism

A song - From farmyard to fireside this carpenter, preacher	 

Written 23 January 2022 to celebrate the 250th anniversary of the birth of Hugh Bourne, one of the founders of Primitive Methodism.


From farmyard to fireside this carpenter, preacher
set free by the gospel sang praise in the hills, 
like Jesus, the poor were his constant companions, 
from factory or workhouse, from slum house to mills.

The good news was more than a spiritual compass, 
he broke from the ones who were buttressed by wealth, 
he shattered the barriers of class and distinction, 
and sought for equality, freedom and health.

He read to the heart of the scripture he studied, 
envisaged a commonwealth founded on grace, 
where all of the people were one with each other, 
who sought to see Jesus in everyone’s face.

He offered redemption to all who would hear him, 
not bounded by buildings, conditions or rules, 
the people were warmed by his kind invitation, 
though some criticised them, and some called them fools.

A primitive gospel was all that was needed 
to lift them above, build up hope, banish shame, 
that simple perspective will rest with God’s people, 
who humbly still follow in Jesus’s name.

Andrew Pratt  
Words © 2022 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England copyright@stainer.co.uk . Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd.
The tune STREETS OF LAREDO is commended for this text.

A hymn - We will join in celebration	.


Written to celebrate the 250th anniversary of the birth of Hugh Bourne, one of the founders of Primitive Methodism.


We will join in celebration
of the line in which we stand, 
grown beyond imagination, 
grace for all throughout the land: 
sisters, brothers (sisters, brothers),
here in union, hand in hand.

Once a man who followed Jesus
had a vision for the earth,
grace and joy for all the people 
freed from poverty from birth: 
sing the story (sing the story),
sing in knowledge of our worth.

From a farm to work and fireside 
he would preach and work and act, 
living out the gospel message, 
turning words to living fact, 
still we’re learning (still we’re learning),
letting love and faith attract.

Now in grace and hope and friendship 
we will stand on solid ground,
we will follow in the footsteps
of the Christ Hugh Bourne had found:
onward pilgrims (onward pilgrims),
let our song of joy resound!

Andrew Pratt  
Words © 2022 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England copyright@stainer.co.uk . Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd.
Metre: 8.7.8.7.4.7
The tunes ROUSSEAU’S DREAM, SAINT RAPHAEL, REGENT SQUARE and RHUDDLAN are commended for this text. (If sung to REGENT SQUARE or RHUDDLAN, repeats should be used in the penultimate line of each verse, as shown in parentheses)

'We will join in celebration' intentionally mirrors the pattern of Hugh Bourne's own hymn, 'Hark! the gospel news is sounding' (later attributed jointly to William Sanders)

Hark! the gospel news is sounding:
Christ hath suffered on the tree;
Streams of mercy are abounding;
Grace for all is rich and free.
Now, poor sinner,
Look to him who died for thee.

O escape to yonder mountain!
Now begin to watch and pray;
Christ invites you to the fountain,
Come, and wash your sins away:
Do not tarry,
Come to Jesus while you may.

Grace is flowing like a river;
Millions there have been supplied;
Still it flows as fresh as ever
From the Saviour's wounded side:
None need perish;
All may live, for Christ hath died.

Christ alone shall be our portion;
Soon we hope to meet above,
Then we'll bathe in the full ocean
Of the great Redeemer's love;
All his fullness,
We shall then for ever prove.

William Sanders (1799-1882) and Hugh Bourne (1772-1852)
8 7 8 7 4 7