Now and again I get reintroduced to hold hymns. I say “reintroduced” because they are often hymns I heard as a kid, and while I am quite familiar with the tune, I never really paid any attention to the words, or no more attention than to be able to recite the opening line or the “tag line” for the song. So it was recently with this oldie that even predates me – it goes back to the second or third century:
Let all mortal flesh keep silent,
And with fear and trembling stand
Ponder nothing earthly minded,
For with blessing in his hand,
Christ our God to earth, descending,
Our full homage to demand.
This is one of those hymns where the music and lyrics are perfectly matched. Listening to the chant-like lyrics, the organ rattling the timbers, I can almost smell the incense, and hear the rustling of the nuns’ clothing as they make their way to my pew to force me to kneel erect (i.e. get my ass off the front edge of the pew.) Ah, memories…!