Inauguration Day 2009

One of the things I most appreciate about being an American is our peaceful transition of power.  To emphasize that intentional setting-aside of difference, the President and President-elect choose to ride together from the White House to the Capitol.  All the living US Presidents attend the oath, regardless of party.  There are lessons for the Church in that kind of intentionality, but I’ll leave those thoughts aside for now.

As a Christian, I appreciate my obligation to pray for my leaders, and am doing so as I watch today’s Inauguration events.  I understand one of my favorite hymns was sung at the church service that was part of the Inaugural agenda today.  In the words of Issac Watts, penned 200 years ago, I pray for our nation and our new President:

O God, our help in ages past,
Our hope for years to come,
Our shelter from the stormy blast,
And our eternal home.

Under the shadow of Thy throne
Thy saints have dwelt secure;
Sufficient is Thine arm alone,
And our defense is sure.

Before the hills in order stood,
Or earth received her frame,
From everlasting Thou art God,
To endless years the same.

Thy Word commands our flesh to dust,
“Return, ye sons of men”:
All nations rose from earth at first,
And turn to earth again.

A thousand ages in Thy sight
Are like an evening gone;
Short as the watch that ends the night
Before the rising sun.

The busy tribes of flesh and blood,
With all their lives and cares,
Are carried downwards by the flood,
And lost in foll’wing years.

Time, like an ever-rolling stream,
Bears all its sons away;
They fly, forgotten, as a dream
Dies at the op’ning day.

Like flow’ry fields the nations stand
Pleased with the morning light;
The flow’rs beneath the mower’s hand
Lie with’ring ere ’tis night.

O God, our help in ages past,
Our hope for years to come,
Be Thou our guard while troubles last,
And our eternal home.

Issac Watts (1674-1748); para. of Psalm 90:1-5, public domain

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2 Responses to “Inauguration Day 2009”

  1. AdamR
    January 20, 2009 at 2:12 pm #

    “Peaceful Transition of Power.” That is a blessing or luxury we may overlook or take for granted. Thank you for the reminder of how fortunate we are to have that Peaceful Transition of Power as our Practice and not the Exception.

  2. Tracy
    January 20, 2009 at 3:36 pm #

    “Oh God Our Help in Ages Past” is also one of my favorite hymns.

    I will pray for our new president and his family, regardless of my thoughts. He is our sworn leader and I have to respect that. I am a proud American filled with patriotism and love and will support our president.

    I’m just really glad God was kept in everything. Because this country was founded under God by our ancestors and that must never change no matter whom we vote in as our commander and chief. So God Bless the president and America…

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