LORD, WE HAVE COME TOGETHER
LORD, WE HAVE COME TOGETHER Unison + piano or brass / Congregational singing
Music & Lyrics: Dick Krommenhoek Danish* / English
* The Danish original version with lyrics by Emil Larsen is published in ´Frelsens Hær Sangbog - 2000´ / Song No. 91´. This is available from: Frelsens Hærs Hovedkvarter – Frederiksberg Allé 9, 1621 København V, Denmark.
The music for this song was written to the Danish lyrics by Emil Larsen for the 2000 Songbook in the Denmark territory.
Emil Larsen was a Danish Methodist minister at the beginning of the 20th century. He was the brother of my wife´s grandfather, Lt.Colonel Sofus Schou Larsen, who died on active service when he was the training principal of the Denmark Territory.
The original Danish lyrics ´De ord, der gør os kolde´ explain how the words we say show how we treat one another. Words can make people feel cold, words can bring happiness, words can give strength and the words from our lips can reach the hearts of people. The prayer in the last verse of the writer of the lyrics, Emil Larsen, is that his words may be a message from God that reaches the hearts of others.
When I was invited to be the special guest for the UK territory 2008 Music Leaders’ Councils, I decided to write new lyrics in English to be used as a congregational song for this event. These new words have no bearing on the original Danish lyrics. Accompanied by the International Staff Band, some 400 music leaders premiered this English version of the song on this occasion.
WHY AND WHAT
We come to Christ individually, but the experience and the growth of our faith largely depends on Christian fellowship. Also, holiness finds its true identity in community with others. To enhance and underline this, I believe we lack sufficient ‘we’ songs. This is also important to counter the predominantly ‘I focused’ overflow of praise and worship repertoire which is used in the Army nowadays. This coincides with our ever-growing individualistic society. We live in a world of ‘self’. ‘I’phones, ‘I’pads, are all related to self. However, our doctrines start by saying ‘We believe..’ and the Lord’s Prayer says ‘Our father..’ We therefore need to underline our standing together as God’s children and our faith is based on being there for others; giving ourselves to others, as Christ gave himself.
More ‘we’ songs, I believe, are therefore needed for our song repertoire, because they are vital for our understanding of the profound richness of being united as God´s children in the body of Christ.
The lyrics of the song aim to underline the unspeakable beauty of being united as children of a loving and most gracious heavenly Father, as underlined in the final verse:
We are so glad you found us,
Chose us to be your own,
That love and grace surround us
And we serve you alone.
This easy-to-learn song is aimed at congregational singing. Apart from the optional last two bars in harmony, the song is in unison, throughout.
The High Church music style gives the song a solemn feel. This, and the nature of the lyrics, makes the song very suitable as the opening song of the meeting.The song works well with piano, provided the harmony is played as written. However, the true nature and style of the song only comes fully across with brass accompaniment, which also provides a modulation after verse 4, changing the key a semitone up for the 5th and final verse.
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