Wednesday 12 December 2012

Christ, whose glory fills the skies

Christ, whose glory fills the skies,
Christ, the true, the only Light,
Sun of Righteousness, arise,
Triumph o’er the shades of night;
Dayspring from on high, be near;
Day-star, in my heart appear.

Dark and cheerless is the morn
Unaccompanied by Thee;
Joyless is the day’s return
Till Thy mercy’s beams I see;
Till they inward light impart,
Glad my eyes, and warm my heart.

Visit then this soul of mine,
Pierce the gloom of sin and grief;
Fill me, Radiancy divine,
Scatter all my unbelief;
More and more Thyself display,
Shining to the perfect day.

I had never thought of Charles Wesley's 'Christ, whose glory fills the skies' as an Advent hymn before - it was written as a hymn for the morning, I believe - but I heard it sung at Evensong the other day, and it works well at this time of year. Perhaps it's because the phrase 'Sun of Righteousness' (which is from Malachi 4:2) recalls Wesley's other more famous Christmas hymn (and there's also this; I think he liked that image!).  Or perhaps it's just the imagery of light triumphing over darkness which makes it so appropriate for this season - 'the year's midnight'.