Monday, July 25, 2005

Sheet Music Notes: Be Thou My Vision

"Be Thou My Vision" is a well-known church hymn and one of my favorites. The lyrics are a wonderful expression of devotion to the service of God. I love the words to this Hymn...

Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart
Naught be all else to me save that thou art
Thou my best thought by day or by night
Waking or sleeping thy presence my light.

Be thou my wisdom, thou my true word
I ever with thee, thou with me, Lord
Thou my great Father, I thy true Son
Thou in me dwelling, and I with thee one.

Riches I heed not, nor man's empty praise
Thou mine inheritance, now and always
Thou and thou only, first in my heart
High King of heavem, my treasure thou art.

High King of heaven, after victory won
May I reach heaven's joys, O bright heaven's sun
Heart of my own heart, whatever befall
Still be my vision, O ruler of all.

The melody itself actually comes from an old Irish tune. Scholars debate the date of origin, but generally put it at about the 8th century.

In terms of playing the music, simply approach it with a tone of reverence. Imagine yourself in a very old cathedral, sitting down at a beautiful grand piano. As you play the first few notes, just let them ring out into space. Remember, this is a hymn that was, at one time, primarily sung acapella. So as you play the melody, imagine that melody as a voice, declaring its love and devotion to God.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

So beautiful...

6:49 AM  
Anonymous Micah Watson said...

Wonderful. I love hymns, and a hymn put to your beautiful style is doubly a blessing.

10:06 PM  
Blogger Susan said...

Hey David, got here through A favorite listen for me! Your thoughts on Be Thou My Vision are so similar to mine, and it is the first track of an album I'm recording this January. I think you'd like the opening. Check it out at

7:52 AM  
Blogger Keith F said...

Love your music and love the hymn. We don't sing hymns enough in churches anymore. I miss that. I especially love your CD, The Vigil. It's very reverent, inspiring, and soothing. I listen to it when things are somewhat hectic in my life. Anyway, thanx for the constant inpiration.

4:05 PM  
Blogger Steve Westphal said...

Yes, this is a great site. I found another great site for free download of mp3

12:26 AM  
Anonymous Stephanie J. said...

Dearest David,
My praise band that I play violin for always plays this song. Be Thou My Vision is my personal favorite of the select praise worship songs we play. I like to close my eyes and play it from the heart. Our church recently aquired this video projection system for sermon notes and song lyrics and I am the imputer of new songs, lately and it's been uber fun for me. I have been praying over your career for quite some time now, and I ask of one prayer request that you pray for my church, they seem to be struggling in leadership and in faith. It is the United Methodist Church of Garden City Kansas. Many thanks and praying for you always.

Love in Him,

4:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Mr. David.
I just wanted to say that I love your music.
I hope I can come to the whisperings concert in Atl. next Sept.
Your style is my favorite of all....that beautiful romantic, sometimes melancholy, piano solo type.
Thanks for all the free listening music on your site. And thanks for having sheet music available. =)
In Christ,
Miss Laura

5:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have always loved that song :)

10:14 AM  
Anonymous Melanie said...

This is one of my favourite hymns and to hear it in this way is soothing to the soul. Whenever i listen to it i am reminded of God's power as well as his wonderful grace...

3:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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11:40 PM  

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