Now here is a good hymn! Not a catchy, toe-tapping tune (though fits many a decent one being 8787D) and not a sexy theme (though an important one).
The writer, Martin Leckebusch, grew up very close to Dibley and has been writing hymns since he was a teenager. What I especially admire is that he tackles less common themes such as this one on tithing/stewardship. I know Martin calls by here from time to time, so 'hello' if you spot this and thank you for providing another much needed hymn, which we will sing at the Gathering Place next Sunday...
Long ago you taught your people:
'Part of what you reap is mine-
From your cattle, bring the firstborn;
Tithe the crops of field and vine.'
Though beneath the law's restrictions
We are not compelled to live,
As we reap our monthly harvest,
Make us eager, Lord, to give.
What a way of life you showed us
Through the Son you gladly gave:
Never snared by earthly treasure,
Buried in a borrowed grave-
Yet to all he freely offered
Riches of the deepest kind:
Let us live with his example
Firmly fixed in heart and mind.
In the lifestyle of the Spirit
Giving has a central part;
Teach us, Lord, this grace of sharing
With a cheerful, loving heart-
Not a tiresome obligation,
Not a barren legal due,
But an overflow of worship:
All we have belongs to you!
Martin E Leckebusch (born 1962) © 2000 Kevin Mayhew Ltd