Scripture Verse

Mary…sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. Luke 10:39

Introduction

portrait
Scott Werdebaugh (1951–)

Words: Fran­ces R. Ha­ver­gal, 1866.

Music: Mas­ter’s Praise Scott Wer­de­baugh, 2017 (🔊 pdf nwc).

portrait
Frances R. Havergal (1836–1879)

I felt that I had not writ­ten any­thing spe­cial­ly in praise to Christ. A long­ing to do so pos­sessed me. I want­ed to show forth His praise to Him, not to oth­ers, ev­en if no mor­tal ev­er saw it, He would see ev­ery line, would have known the un­writ­ten long­ing to praise Him ev­en if words failed utterly.

It des­cribes, as most of my po­ems do, ra­ther rem­in­is­cence than pre­sent feeling. I can­not trans­cribe it at the mo­ment of strong feel­ing. I re­call it after­wards and write it down.

O Master! It is per­haps my fa­vo­rite ti­tle be­cause it im­plies rule and sub­mission; and this is what love craves. Men may feel dif­fer­ent­ly, but a true wo­man’s sub­mis­sion is in­sep­ar­a­ble from deep love.

I wrote it in the cold and tw­ilight in the lit­tle back room, un­car­pet­ed, at Shares­hill Par­son­age, Dec. 31, 1866. I be­gan my book [Min­is­try of Song] with the ex­press­ion of its de­vo­tion to God’s glo­ry, I wished to close it with a dis­tinc­tive as­crip­tion of praise to Je­sus, and, there­fore, with­out any hes­i­ta­tion, at once de­cid­ed up­on plac­ing Ad­or­a­tion [this hymn] where it stands.

Frances Ha­ver­gal
Julian, p. 844

Lyrics

O Mas­ter, at Thy feet
I bow in rap­ture sweet!
Before me, as in dark­en­ing glass,
Some glo­ri­ous out­lines pass,
Of love, and truth, and ho­li­ness, and pow­er;
I own them Thine, O Christ,
And bless Thee for this hour.

O full of truth and grace,
Smile of Je­ho­vah’s face;
O ten­der­est heart of love un­told!
Who may Thy praise un­fold?
Thee, Sav­ior, Lord of lords and King of kings,
Well may ador­ing se­raphs
Hymn with veil­ing wings.

I have no words to bring
Worthy of Thee, my king,
And yet one an­them in Thy praise
I long, I long to raise;
The heart is full, the eye en­tranced above,
But words all melt away
To si­lent awe and love.

How can the lip be dumb,
The hand all still and numb,
When Thee the heart doth see and own
Her Lord and God alone?
Tune for Thy­self the mu­sic of my days,
And op­en Thou my lips
That I may show Thy praise.

Yea, let my whole life be
One an­them unto Thee,
And let the praise of lip and life
Outring all sin and strife.
O Je­sus, Mas­ter! Be Thy name su­preme,
For Hea­ven and earth the one,
The grand, eter­nal theme.