This song is not completely new at this point but I still wanted to write a bit about it. It has been a joy singing this as a church. It’s one of those songs that capitalize on the fact that South Fellowship Church is a singing church. I love that about our church!

Whenever we add a song to our repertoire I ask myself what truths the song presses upon us. That is, after all, what music does, it presses upon us ideas and emotions. I long to sing a body of songs that press a diverse range of gospel truths upon us. In the ups and downs of life, we ought to have songs that linger on the surface of our souls that bubble up and help us to think and feel correctly. So the question is the same for this song. What truths and emotions does this song offer us?

One theological truth that sets Christianity apart is the incarnation. Simply put, God became a man. We have a God who understands the human condition, understands the temptation, and understands pain. It’s on that foundation that God’s love is poured out for us. This song emphasizes this truth with lines like: “You walked it first, You know our pain” and “You met us in our suffering and bore our shame.” These ideas help us remember that we don’t have a distant God. We have a God who “met us in our suffering.”

We sing another song at South called Abide With Me. It is one of my favorite songs but I’ve had one issue with it. Why ask God to abide with me if he is omnipresent and he has given us his spirit to dwell with us? I think we still benefit from making such requests because the requests are honest. Knowing a theological truth doesn’t automatically mean it’s easy to feel the implications of that truth. The Psalms are filled with prayers that are probably not theologically or morally informed but are emotionally honest. For example, there are many times in the Psalms when the psalmist asks God to commit violent acts against his enemies. Praying for the destruction people does not reflect the heart of God who died for his enemies. Is it wrong to pray? I don’t think so but that is another blog. There is a great video that addresses this if you want more answers about that. The point is, that we are free to pray honest prayers to God. When we ask God to “abide with me” the answer is a resounding “yes.” It’s almost an unnecessary prayer if we think God wasn’t going to abide. It’s only necessary because WE need to say it to remind us of God’s consistent answer.

One of the reasons I love the Chorus of this song is that it extends a reminder of God’s posture towards a prayer like this. The lyrics say, “Ever close, God abide with me.” When I ask God to abide, I must remember that he is, “ever close.” God’s posture towards us is not distant. It is not God who is distant from us, it is our own awareness and openness that makes us removed from him. This chorus reminds us that he is near and waiting to engage us with his, never letting go, love. It’s as if he is chomping at the bit for us to wake up and say we want his presence. As soon as we do, he is immediately available to declare his love.


I have a home, eternal home
But for now I walk this broken world
You walked it first, You know our pain
But You show hope can rise again up from the grave

Abide with me, abide with me
Don’t let me fall, and don’t let go
Walk with me and never leave
Ever close, God abide with me

There in the night, Gethsemane
Before the cross, before the nails
Overwhelmed, alone You prayed
You met us in our suffering and bore our shameAbide with me, abide with me
Don’t let me fall, and don’t let go
Walk with me and never leave
Ever close, God abide with me

Oh love that will not ever let me go
Love that will not ever let me go
You never let me go
Love that will not ever let me go
Oh You never let us go

And up ahead, eternity
We’ll weep no more, we’ll sing for joy, abide with me