Eternal source of humankind
be near us in life’s stress:
relieve the strain of troubled mind,
dispel our worries, let us find
your comfort and closeness.
When daily pressures take their toll
in endless busyness,
as social systems claim control
and drown the murmurs of our soul,
enfold us in stillness.
Come, Holy Spirit, help us heed
the presence of your dove:
subdue the noise of selfish greed,
of wealth creation and false need
with whispers of your love.
O guide us through life’s complex maze
with gentleness and peace:
to soothe the rush of hectic days,
come calming Spirit, clear the haze
and let us find release.
Words © Gary Hopkins 2013
Metre: 86 886 (6)
Suggested tune: Repton (StF 495) [Note: If sung to this tune, repeat last line of each verse.] Alternatively, try Caryl Micklem’s less well-known tune, Gatescarth (StF 520), which doesn’t require the last line repetition and lays a little less weight on the unstressed syllables that conclude verses 1 and 2.
In Great God, your love has called us here (StF 499), Brian Wren re-visits Charles Wesley’s great hymn, And can it be that I should gain? (StF 345), taking Wesley’s ideas and moving beyond personal experience to sing of “social forces” and “powers and systems”. Similarly, here Gary Hopkins draws on the mood and cadences of another much-loved hymn (Dear Lord and Father of mankind, StF 495) and extends the ideas of the Victorian writer John Whittier to reflect the coroporate and social pressures of modern society.