Light obeyed increaseth light, Light rejected bringeth night,
Who shall give me power to choose, If the love of light I lose?

 

How Can I Keep From Singing?

"How Can I Keep From Singing" is a Christian hymn written by American Baptist minister Robert Wadsworth Lowry in 1860. The song is sometimes listed in hymnals by it’s opening line “My Life Flows On” The  hymn was sung in slavery days by abolitionist Quakers, and is often incorrectly cited as a Quaker hymn. Lowry, who also wrote the hymn "Shall We Gather at the River," first published "How Can I Keep from Singing?" in 1869 in the collection, "Bright Jewels".

Pete Seeger helped to make this song fairly well-known in the folk-revival. Seeger learned the song from Doris Plenn. Plenn, raised in North Carolina, was taught the song by her Quaker grandmother, who told her:"Honey, this is my favorite song, and I want you to always remember it. It was made up years ago when people like us were being thrown in jail for their beliefs." Seeger's version was published in "Sing Out" in 1957.  He sang the song  so stirringly that it qualified as one of his statements of purpose. David King Dunaway used it as the title of his 1990 Seeger biography. Seeger's version omits some of the Christian wording of the original, and adds a verse.

Bruce Springsteen recorded this traditional song with The Seeger Sessions Band during the "Seeger Sessions". The song is included on Bruce's 2006 cover album, “We Shall Overcome - The Seeger Sessions”. The Seeger Sessions consist of three recording sessions, during which all the album's songs were cut live in the living room of Bruce's New Jersey farmhouse. The songs were not rehearsed and all arrangements were conducted as Bruce and the band played.

Enya  also gave the song new life  when she sang a version on her “Shepherd Moons” CD in 1991. Others who have recorded it include Eva Cassidy, Judy Collins, Arlo Guthrie, Gordon Bok, Noel Paul Stookey and Glenn Yarbrough. 


"How Can I Keep From Singing"

Robert Lowry-

My life flows on in endless song
Above Earth's lamentation
I hear the real though far-off hymn
That hails a new creation

Above the tumult and the strife
I hear its music ringing
It sounds an echo in my soul
How can I keep from singing

What though the tempest loudly roars
I hear the truth it liveth
What though the darkness 'round me close
Songs in the night it giveth

No storm can shake my inmost calm
While to that rock I'm clinging
Since love is Lord of heaven and earth
How can I keep from singing

When tyrants tremble sick with fear
And hear their death knell ringing
When friends rejoice both far and near
How can I keep from singing

No storm can shake my inmost calm
While to that rock I'm clinging
Since love is Lord in heaven and earth
How can I keep from singing

My life goes on in endless song
Above Earth's lamentation
I hear the real though far-off hymn
How can I keep from singing

Lord how can I keep from singing
Oh how can I keep from singing
(Thank you Lord)
(Thank you Lord)

 

Chalking the Door

This short liturgy is a way of marking our homes, usually at the front or main entrance, with sacred signs and symbols as we ask God's blessing upon those who live, work, or visit throughout the coming year.

The Grand Miracle

The Incarnation of Jesus Christ is the Grand Miracle. So this reflection on the subject of one of C.S. Lewis’ essays  is a reflection on what we celebrate at Christmas.