How Great Thou Art

Screen Shot 2014-08-04 at 7.36.04 PM

Screen Shot 2014-08-04 at 7.53.35 PM
About a year ago, I had a realization that BLEW MY MIND. I realized that for my WHOLE LIFE, I had been hearing a super popular hymn all wrong.

I thought that once I knew the truth, I’d never go back to my old way of thinking.. kind of like how you can’t unsee the arrow in FedEx once you realize it’s there, you know?

But that’s so wrong. In the past year, I’ve spent more time outside in the beauty of God’s created nature, and when I have stood watching a waterfall or sitting on a rock in a river, staring up at the stars, walking barefoot in grass, observing sunsets, watching spiders build webs… I find my original interpretation to grow more and more true in my heart.

When I was the craft director at camp, I painted this little picture and it hung on my wall for a few years:

The first five words of the Bible. In the beginning, God created

In her book A Circle of Quiet, Madeleine L’Engle talks often about how we are all called to be co-creators with God. Because it is the nature of love to create. I’ve written about it before, but you know what makes me want to make stuff? BOYS. I talk to a boy I like for 5 minutes and suddenly I’m like “BAKE ALL THE COOKIES! PAINT ALL THE PICTURES! USE ALL THE GLITTER!” I’m not married or in a place to have kids, but two people sacrificing financial and emotional peace in order to make a tiny human that bursts open the walls of their heart to let all the vulnerability in the world into it…. that is something love does. Ultimately, that love is what created us. Talk about giving up emotional peace when God created mankind. It took about a blink for us to ruin that and break God’s heart…. and it keeps getting worse and worse as time goes on.

So when I look around and I see trees and open sky {ESPECIALLY SKY. IN THE DAYTIME BUT ESPECIALLY THE NIGHT} I am full of wonder and amazement and eternal gratitude for the one who made such beautiful things for me to see and hear, to taste and smell, to feel and to experience.

and then sings my soul, my savior God to thee:

How great your art.
How great thou art.



  1. August 5, 2014 / 2:40 pm

    Haha. That’s funny that you’d been hearing it wrong for so long. Until just about a year ago I thought the line “change a leper’s spots” was “change a leopard’s spots.” I mean, really, leopards have more spots than lepers.

    • August 11, 2014 / 8:42 pm


  2. August 6, 2014 / 3:47 am

    hahaha that’s awesome! i kinda like your original version better 🙂

    • August 11, 2014 / 8:41 pm

      me too, Julie! me too 😉

  3. August 6, 2014 / 11:59 am

    That is one of my favorite hymns! My mom used to play it on the piano while I was waiting on the school bus when I was a kid! My dad is famous in our family for not understanding lyrics. I gave him a Fall Out Boy cd years ago and he thought the line “Where is your boy tonight?” was “Where is your butter knife?” and he had been singing along for years! He didn’t realize until I took him to a Fall Out Boy concert last year!

    • August 11, 2014 / 8:41 pm

      Hi Sarah! Thanks for stopping by – that’s AWESOME about your dad’s misunderstood lyrics. I knew someone who thought Adele’s “Chasing Pavements” was “Chasing PENGUINS”!! Hahahahaha.

  4. August 8, 2014 / 6:40 pm

    I really do love that hymn. And what a good reminder that he is the great creator when we look outside at all he made for us.

    • August 11, 2014 / 8:40 pm

      Thanks for stopping by, Amanda <3 I love that hymn as well!

  5. August 9, 2014 / 10:06 am

    Thanks for sharing this sweet post! I just started reading Walking on Water by Madeleine L’Engle. (Love her fiction.) So I was interested to see that you quoted her. I’m visiting from the Simple Moments STick blog link-up. Blessings!

    • August 11, 2014 / 8:40 pm

      Oh Renee – that is one of my all-time favorite books EVER! She is brilliant. <3 enjoy it!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *