eternal Light // hymn #1 of challenge

The first hymn, Eternal Light, for my hymn challenge is complete!
September 30 // Pentecost 18

James 3:13-18, Two Kinds of Wisdom

13 Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. 14 But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. 15 Such “wisdom” does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. 16 For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.

17 But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. 18 Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness.

 

Unauthorized copying, duplication or alteration of this composition is a violation of laws.

You can print by clicking on the title here, Eternal Light. It is a pdf document. All of my hymns are copyrighted. You should not alter the music in any way and give me, the composer, full recognition for the piece. If you would like to use the hymn publicly please ask permission by contacting me at thecozycomposer@gmail.com.

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making new again

It was freshman year of college, 2004, and I had written a piece of music for voice, piano, and cello. The inspiration behind this piece was the recent passing of a young family member. When looking for lyrics, the hymn text to Eternal Light Shine In My Heart fit perfectly.

by Alcuin and paraphrased by Christopher Idle

1 Eternal light, shine in my heart;
Eternal hope, lift up my eyes;
Eternal power, be my support;
Eternal wisdom, make me wise.

2 Eternal life, raise me from death;
Eternal brightness, help me see;
Eternal Spirit, give me breath;
Eternal Savior, come to me.

3 Until by Your most costly grace,
Invited by Your holy word,
At last I come before Your face
To know You, my eternal God.

Feel free to listen below. The musicians playing are some of my dearest friends, Allison Czer/soprano and Maggie Dale/cello. I also am on the recording as second soprano and pianist.

It has been exactly eight years and I thought it would be nice to change the version of Eternal Light I composed earlier strictly to a hymn. The Eternal Light text complements the Pentecost season and having the melody and text already chosen helps my challenge of completing this hymn in a few days!

As I was rewriting the harmonies below the hymn melody last night I kept on coming to the same problem that I often do when I’m writing church music – it’s too difficult for the average congregation to sing.

My use of dissonance, seventh chords, and the so called dreaded parallel 4ths and 5ths are in this hymn too. I tried changing them and replacing them with more typical chord progressions and common harmonies but the hymn then sounded – eh… not my own. I will be trying harder to adapt my style of composing to be approachable by a congregation and hopefully liked as well!

I’ll be working on getting this up on Sibelius, my notation software, and edit a bit more.