MY HELP COMETH FROM THE LORD
MY HELP COMETH FROM THE LORD
Music: Dick Krommenhoek
Lyrics: Corrie Krommenhoek-Oerlemans
* The Dutch original version is published in ´Liederen van het Leger des Heils - 2007´ / Song No. 232´. This is available from: Hoofdkwartier Leger des Heils – Spoordreef 10, 1315 GN Almere, The Netherlands.
When my father, Brigadier Theo Krommenhoek, had only just retired from active service, he was diagnosed with cancer. This was in 1983, the year when Vibeke and I were commissioned as Salvation Army officers. He was promoted to glory in July 1985.
When my mother, Brigadier Corrie Krommenhoek-Oerlemans, and I were asked to write a song for the 1984 Territorial Music Councils in the Netherlands, my father was already very sick and in much pain. In her grief and despair over my father´s suffering and the prospect of losing her loved one, she had often turned to the words of Psalm 121: ´I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth´.My mother found so much comfort and strength from these words, that right in the middle of one of the most difficult times of her life she used the words of Psalm 121 as the basis for the lyrics of this song.
The music of the verse in the original version is completely different from the one in the published version. This is because I had written the music of the verse to fit my voice as I sang the verses as a solo from the piano at the 1984 Territorial Music Councils. The recording of this original version is available in the LINK section of this page.
When later it was requested that the song be made available for congregational singing, I rewrote the music of the verse, as it now appears in the published version.
WHY AND WHAT
The Bible - the word of God - only has value if the truth it proclaims tangibly relates to the reality of life as experienced by ordinary people like you and me. Suppose that there was no truth in the message of the Bible, which says that ´God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life´. Wouldn’t that make it very difficult, even impossible, to explain why every day there are 174.000 new believers, adding to a total number of 2 billion (two followed by 9 zeros!) Christians in the world today?
God is the true source of love and protection for our lives. We are God’s loved ones! We are his children; he meticulously crafted us in his image; we belong to him and as we want to be with those we love, he passionately longs to be with us. We are God’s deepest longing and when he thinks of us he bursts out in loud singing!
Those who believe in this wonderful truth will daily experience the truth of the words of Psalm 121: ´I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth´.
The song can be used by choirs, but also lends itself very well to congregational singing. In the chorus, the melody is in the men’s voices, whilst the women’s voices sing additional harmony parts. All of this is very easy to learn. Those women who prefer to be exempt from joining in parts can sing the melody line – one octave higher – as written for the men´s voices.The song works well with piano accompaniment, but it is advisable to use brass accompaniment, if available – together with, or without piano – for congregational singing. The brass parts can be obtained from the ´downloads section´ on this page.
It is important to observe the 72-metronome tempo. Singing too slowly will take away the flow from the song, whilst singing too fast destroys the song´s solemn character.Slowing the tempo down considerably in the bar (bar 12) leading up to the chorus is strongly advised. This will make it possible to have the intended powerful and clear start of the chorus.
My help cometh from the Lord - 1984 Territorial Music Council (Sound File)
YouTube audio performance – source unknown
SAM + piano or brass
Dutch* / English / Finnish / Norwegian