When I was doing chemotherapy, hymns ran through my mind like mantras. It didn’t seem as if I had heard or thought of the song in a terribly long time and then I would be lying in bed staring at the blue walls of our bedroom while “I Know That My Redeemer Liveth” resounded inexplicably in my head. I came to talk about these hymns as the work of the Holy Spirit–bringing comfort to me in my dark times.
Today I have a different hymn running through my head. It is one that we have sung in church only once. It was chosen by a congregant celebrating his 100th birthday. The morning that we sang it, Mark and I sat in front of a dear man in our church who sang this hymn gustily, and in a distinctive Dutch brogue. Perhaps that’s what cemented it in my mind–that uniquely accented English which is immediately fond to me.
I have been unexpectedly happy and peaceful of late. My life seems to be in a lovely balance despite the cancer in my lungs and I find myself relatively bemused by that. As I bustle about my house doing snow day things, running laundry upstairs, laughing with Zoe, looking in the refrigerator for the 20th time, not quite knowing what I’m looking for, I catch myself reveling in the normalcy of life today. The contented vibe that surrounds our family. Perhaps I shouldn’t be so surprised that peace can conquer fear. The kind Dutchman in my head steadily assures me that “he givet, ant givet, ant givet again.”
The lyrics are:
He giveth more grace as our burdens grow greater,
He sendeth more strength as our labors increase;
To added afflictions He addeth His mercy,
To multiplied trials He multiplies peace.
When we have exhausted our store of endurance,
When our strength has failed ere the day is half done,
When we reach the end of our hoarded resources
Our Fatherâ€™s full giving is only begun.
His love has no limits, His grace has no measure,
His power no boundary known unto men;
For out of His infinite riches in Jesus
He giveth, and giveth, and giveth again.