“Praise, My Soul, the God of Heaven” (ELW 864)
1 Praise, my soul, the God of heaven;
joyfully your tribute bring.
Ransomed, healed, restored, forgiven,
evermore God’s praises sing.
Praises everlasting ring!
2 God be praised, for grace and favor
to our forebears in distress.
God be praised, the same forever,
slow to chide and swift to bless.
Glorious is God’s faithfulness!
3 Frail as summer’s flow’r we flourish,
blows the wind and it is gone;
but, as mortals rise and perish,
God endures unchanging on.
Praise the great Eternal One!
4 Angels sing in adoration,
in God’s presence, face to face.
Sun and moon and all creation,
all who dwell in time and space.
Praise with us the God of grace!
Thank you for sharing this week with me—from Los Angeles, in the days after an election. I still have so much to learn about the people of Trinity, Hawthorne. I still have so much to learn about our community—which covers only six square miles, where 75% of the people are renters, where security guards rub shoulders with SpaceX, and where local craft brews are served with local Thai dishes. For all our sakes, all of us need to stay curious about our communities.
Don’t forget the ocean—whatever that is where you are that is literally just over the horizon. Don’t forget to ask questions like a new person: why is that this way? That’s a faithful, kingdom of God question. And don’t run away if the answer is scary.
And, please, don’t ever underestimate the power of the Gospel and the Sacraments to transform lives. Your local church has something to offer, no matter how small, be it on the corner of Inglewood and 130th St or your corner in your community.
O God of Heaven, may this soaring hymn help me see that “praising the God of grace” can happen anywhere and everywhere I go. May we take heart as people of God to join with saints past and present and work for the kingdom with what we have today! Amen.