Lift the Strain of High Thanksgiving

Melody - "O du Liebe meiner Liebe", Basel, 1745

John Ellerton, 1869

Lift the strain of high thanksgiving,
Tread with songs the hallowed way.
Praise our fathers' God for mercies
New to us, their sons, today.
Here they built for Him a dwelling,
Served Him here in ages past,
Fixed it for His sure possession,
Holy ground while time shall last.

2. When the years had wrought their changes,
He, our own unchanging God,
Though on this His habitation,
Look on His decayed abode;
Heard our prayers and helped our counsels,
Blessed the silver and the gold,
Till once more His house is standing
Firm and stately as of old.

3. Entering, then, Thy gates with praises,
Lord, be ours Thine Israel's prayer:
"Rise into Thy place of resting,
Show Thy promised presence there."
Let the gracious word be spoken
Here, as once on Sion's height,
"This shall be My rest forever,
This My dwelling of delight."

4. Fill this latter house with glory
Greater than the former knew;
Clothe with righteousness its priesthood,
Guide its choir to reverence true;
Let Thy Holy One's anointing
Here its sevenfold blessing shed;
Spread for us the heavenly banquet,
Satisfy Thy poor with Bread.

5. Praise to Thee, almighty Father,
Praise to Thee, eternal Son,
Praise to Thee, all-quickening Spirit,
Ever blessed Three in One;
Threefold Power and Grace and Wisdom,
Molding out of sinful clay
Living stones for that true temple
Which shall never know decay. Amen.

A hymn that deals with a rarely written about topic: church restoration. This hymn was written for the rededication of St. Helen's Church, Tarporley, Cheshire, and published in Church Hymns, 1871.

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