Thursday, February 22: Lead On, O King Eternal
Ernest Shurtleff (1862-1917) graduated from Andover Seminary in 1887. For graduation, he penned the words to this hymn. Lead On, O King Eternal is a prayer for guidance and celebration. Let’s see how these words are relevant to today’s life:
Lead on, O King eternal! The day of march has come;
Henceforth in fields of conquest your tents will be our home.
Through days of preparation your grace has made us strong;
And now, O King eternal, we lift our battle song.
Lead on, O King eternal, till sin’s fierce war shall cease,
And holiness shall whisper the sweet amen of peace.
For not with swords loud clashing, nor roll of stirring drums;
But deeds of love and mercy the heavenly kingdom comes.
Lead on, O King eternal: We follow, not with fears,
For gladness breaks like morning where’er your face appears.
Your cross is lifted o’er us; we journey in its light;
The crown awaits the conquest; lead on, O God of might.
This song talks about trust and commitment. Yet somehow, we as His children need to put Him first, but often we don’t; all because we think we can handle ten things at once. Then, when we are overbooked and stressed, we speak unkind words to one another, not realizing what harm this may cause. These are all attacks on our character that one is better than the other.
Psalm 25:6-10 (NIV) says “6 Remember, LORD, your great mercy and love, for they are from of old. 7 Do not remember the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you, LORD, are good. 8 Good and upright is the LORD; therefore he instructs sinners in his ways. 9 He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way. 10 All the ways of the LORD are loving and faithful toward those who keep the demands of his covenant.”
When we hand over our troubles to God… “it’s a party” because we are on the right path following him, “for gladness breaks like morning where’er your face appears. Your cross is lifted o’er us, and we journey in its light.” He is the Almighty One, who gives us our tools when we need them to fight our battles here on Earth.
Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for generous love, even when we might stray from putting You first. Help us grow our relationships first with You and then our family and friends by reading the Word. Amen.