Lord, as we take our chosen way
In commerce, industry or art,
The state or science, we would pray
To serve with singleness of heart.
Thou, Lord, a craftsman’s tools hast plied,
A craftsman’s excellence hast shown,
And honest labour sanctified
By making human toil Thine own.
In works or office, field or mart,
Where our appointments, Lord, may be,
Grant that with mind and hand and heart
We labour as we would for Thee.
So shall our light be shed abroad
And we, as Christians truly named,
Shall strive to be approved of God,
His workmen, not to be ashamed.
This little-used song seems written especially for our North American Labour Day weekend, although it was written many years ago by British Salvationist, Will Brand, who is known better for some of his other hymns. (By the Love That Never Ceased to Hold Me; Rise Up, O Youth; When Jesus from Calvary Called Me; etc.)
Will developed an interest in church music as a choir boy at Christ Church, Dover. After a friend invited him to a Salvation Army meeting, he soon became a junior soldier and then a corps cadet. As he matured, he continued to serve the Lord through music by becoming Deputy Songster Leader at Catford during the First World War. He began writing poetry regularly when in his forties, and wrote over 350 songs and 150 sonnets, many of which have been included in The Musical Salvationist and in his anthology, With Sword and Song, as well as in The Salvation Army Song Book. Did the unnamed boy in Dover ever learn the far-reaching effects of his simple invitation? The words of the above song can remind us, at any time of year, to value our labour and that of others, and to carry out even our mundane daily tasks as contributions for the Lord Jesus Christ and His Kingdom.The words can remind us to value our labour and that of others #labourday Click To Tweet