The song of Moses (Exodus 15:1–19) was both declaration and anticipation: it looked back and forward. Within a few hours of singing this masterpiece of praise, however, the Israelites were murmuring! The question that must be asked then is, how many Israelites sang in the congregation that day with no real feeling or sincerity?
We must ask ourselves the same question. Do we sing with the heart or only with the mouth? Is our singing with an engaged mind, a faithful heart, and earnest desire for the God we praise? Meditate this month on the words of the hymns we so often sing.
What tho’ no flow’rs the fig-tree clothe, Tho’ vines their fruit deny, The labor of the olive fail, And fields no meat supply? Tho’ from the fold, with sad surprise, My flock cut off I see; Tho famine pine in empty stalls, Where herds were wont to be? Yet in the Lord will I be glad, And glory in His love: In Him I’ll joy, who will the God Of my salvation prove. He to my tardy feet shall lend The swiftness of the roe; Till, raised on high, I safely dwell Beyond the reach of woe. God is the treasure of my soul, The source of lasting joy; A joy which want shall not impair, Nor death itself destroy.Scottish Psalter, 1880, Paraphrase of Habakkuk 3:17-18