O, DEAR LORD, SEARCH THE PALM OF YOUR HAND
O, DEAR LORD, SEARCH THE PALM OF YOUR HAND Full band
Music: Dick Krommenhoek
The music portrays the beginning of the life of a baby boy and the development of his young life.
The joy of the parents for their new born baby boy on this very special day sounds in the first line of the song ‘Morning has broken, like the first morning’. The dedication of their child by bringing him to the throne of God can be heard in the beginning bars of the song: ‘When mothers of Salem their children brought to Jesus’.
The music rapidly develops into the excitement of life. But just when his life is on the brink of unfolding in all its fullness, the music suddenly slows down and almost comes to a hold. The, now, 21 year old young man is diagnosed with a life threatening illness and is rushed into hospital where the doctors fear for his life. The parents again bring their son before the throne of God when the music repeats: ‘When mothers of Salem their children brought to Jesus’.
Although the parents live in fear and desperation they firmly believe that God loves their son more that they could ever love him themselves. They find comfort in the words of Isaiah 49:16 ‘I have written your name on the palms of my hands. Your walls are never out of my sight.’ (New International Reader's Version)
Quietly the music moves to a horn solo playing the melody of the words:
‘O, dear Lord, search the palm of your hand
For the name of my boy that you’ve written there.
He needs you, Lord, your healing, your care;
O, dear Lord, search the palm of your hand.’
The music builds up in sound and intensity leading to the fortissimo repetition of this same melody, as a cry to God: ‘O, dear Lord, search the palm of your hand’.
Finally the music is quietening down, again portraying ‘When mothers of Salem their children brought to Jesus’, and ‘Morning has broken, like the first morning’. Hoping and praying that one morning the life- threatening illness will be conquered, the parents also know that whatever the outcome will be, one day, the morning will arrive when pain, sickness and death will be no more.
The boy in this piece is Daniël Krommenhoek, the son of Dick and Vibeke Krommenhoek, who was diagnosed with Aplastic Anaemia in 2005. By the grace of God, modern medication has been successful in prompting Daniel’s bone marrow to produce sufficient quality blood for normal daily living. The locating of a bone marrow donor makes a transplant possible if needed.
Dick Krommenhoek felt inspired to write this music in dedication to Daniël. But it is also meant to bring all children before the throne of God. He who has written the names of our children in the palm of his hand loves them more than we could possibly love them ourselves.
If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! (Matthew 7:11 – NIV)
Though the music is not difficult by any means, it does take above-average players to perform this piece well. This is especially evident for the fragile passages, which so characterize the nature of the music.
The ´andante´ indication is meant to secure a nice flow to the music, but be careful not to play the music too fast.
The build-up from piano in bar 52 to fortissimo in bar 67 needs to be steady with a strong climax from all players, then to quieten down to the end of the piece, until finally there only remain the major thirds from one euphonium, and one solo horn.
New York Staff Band – Commissioning Weekend June 2009, conducted by
Commissioner Dick Krommenhoek