How Great Thou Art!

This morning as I was awakening to face a new day, a passage of Scripture came to mind that encouraged my heart. It comes from Isaiah, chapter 30, verse 15 (Living Bible)—emphasis mine:

For the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel, says:
Only in returning to me and waiting for me will you be saved;
in quietness and confidence is your strength . . .

Chapter 30 should be read in its entirety so that you begin to gain an understanding of the context and sense in which Isaiah wrote these words. Time and again, God demonstrated His steadfast love for His chosen people, Israel. But Israel had utterly forgotten God—they believed they were capable of living without listening to or acknowledging Him. In today’s language you might ask Israel, “How’s that been working out for you?”


1)  O Lord my God, when I in awesome wonder,
Consider all the works Thy hands have made;
I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder,
Thy power throughout the universe displayed.

Then sings my soul, my Savior God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, how great Thou art!
Then sings my soul, my Savior God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, how great Thou art!

2)  When through the woods, and forest glades I wander,
And hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees.
When I look down, from lofty mountain grandeur
And hear the brook, and feel the gentle breeze.


3)  And when I think, that God, His Son not sparing;
Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in;
That on the cross, my burden gladly bearing,
He bled and died to take away my sin.


4)  When Christ shall come, with shout of acclamation,
And take me home, what joy shall fill my heart!
Then shall I bow, in humble adoration,
And there proclaim, “My God, how great Thou art!”


How Great Thou Art [Wikipedia]

Story Behind How Great Thou Art


16 Replies to “How Great Thou Art!”

  1. This was an incredible video and rendition of one of my very favorite hymns. I didn’t know the story behind it so that was a bonus!

    1. Hi Julie ~ So glad to hear you enjoyed today’s post. Learning the stories behind the hymns is always inspiring to me. Thank you for writing! ❤️

  2. It is so heartening to read the stories behind the hymns, dear Leslie. Thank you. I am struck by the mention of the birds singing, and the part they play in our daily life, our friends, singing to us, to creation, to other birds, to attract mates, to declare territory, to exult in their flight.

    Your earlier mention of your bird friends reminds me of a precious parting gift from the UK when we came to California over 20 years ago, leaving a precious heritage in our family life, and leaving our newly engaged son and the knowledge that there would be grandchildren peopling the same paths we had trod with so many blessings. The present was a cassette from a dear pro-life friend and colleague who lived on a farm in an old finely-crafted farmhouse. She recorded her ¨dawn chorus¨ for me as a permanent resource. These birds are so much more intelligent than we had heretofore understood, and their language so subtle and complex. I ask myself if they understood that something special had happened during the recent shutdown to reduce the stress on their habitat, and do they hope it will not return to earlier stresses as new activity resumes in terms of traffic and air impacts? They must miss the rain, and do they feel the hope of a wee drizzle this weekend?

    Thinking of you in your special home, where Jon has made so many charming embellishments that give pleasure to the local bird life. Love, Genevieve

    1. Thank you, Genevieve. I, too, am bolstered through discovering stories behind some of the hymns. Really serves to bring the hymns to life.

  3. Everything about your post today is so beautiful and calming. It made me sit still and take it all in. Sometimes the brain needs to do this. Thanks, Leslie!

    1. Dear Shirley ~ You’re welcome. I agree—we need to be still and know and remember that He is God. We are so small in comparison, yet He loves us❣️

  4. Thank you for sending this – a perspective we don’t always look for but plenty of pictures out there if we just take the time to look. I love to look at flowers and tell our Lord how great He is for the all the little items He created – that includes each one of us. When we see the pictures of earth from space we have to realize just how small we are. BUT He knows us and cares about us and takes care of us. How great is our God?! Love you Leslie and Jon

    1. Thank you, Sharon❣️ Yes, each of us need only take time to observe all of the wonder and majesty surrounding us to be reminded how truly great our God is.

  5. Thank You Leslie. It was something I needed to meditate on and when the birds began singing, made me think of you ❤️

    1. Laura ~ So glad you let me know. This hymn seems to have struck a “beloved chord” with a lot of readers. 🙂

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