Posted by: rcottrill | April 29, 2016

So Send I You (2nd Version)

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Words: Edith Margaret Clarkson (b. June 8, 1915; d. Mar. 17, 2008)
Music: John Willard Peterson (b. Nov. 1, 1921; d. Sept. 20, 2006)

Links:
Wordwise Hymns (Margaret Clarkson)
The Cyber Hymnal (Margaret Clarkson)
Hymnary.org (Margaret Clarkson)

Note: Margaret Clarkson wrote the words of the earlier song quoted below in 1937. John Peterson composed the tune in 1954. That tune was also used with the second version of the song written in 1963.

There is a lengthy and excellent biography of Miss Clarkson on Hymnary.org. It reveals to us a woman who suffered greatly, and whom God used mightily. Note particularly the paragraph about her growing interest in hymns, and her study of them, as a child, during the Sunday sermons in her church.

People do make mistakes. That’s why carpenters warn, “Measure twice, before you cut once.” And, as the saying goes, it’s what erasers on pencils are for. It’s the reason those typing on an old fashioned typewriter kept a bottle of white-out on hand. Now, with computers, we simply block and delete to make the correction. No muss, no fuss–unless you delete too much!

The Bible has a lot to say about making corrections in our spiritual lives. On the personal level, a father admonishes his son, “My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, nor detest His correction; for whom the Lord loves He corrects, just as a father the son in whom he delights” (Prov. 3:11-12; cf. Heb. 12:5-11). The correction of the Lord, when we get off course, is one of four main functions of the Bible:

“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness” (II Tim. 3:16).

Making corrections. It may sound strange to say that a hymn writer produced a new song to correct the impression made by an earlier song, but that’s exactly what happened to Margaret Clarkson, whom I had the privilege of meeting some years ago. Margaret was born in Melfort, Saskatchewan. She became a school teacher in her early years, working in a couple of  isolated communities in Northern Ontario.

That was a lonely time for her. She had little contact with others dedicated to Christ. But in the isolation, she found in God’s Word the challenge she needed–in particular the words of the Lord Jesus, “As the Father has sent Me, I also send you” (Jn. 20:21). She thought of the suffering of the Saviour, what it cost the Son of God to come to this earth, and give His life to take the punishment for our sins. The thought came to her that this isolated community was her mission field, right where she was. “This was where He had sent me,” she said later.

With that, she sat down and wrote what some have called the finest missionary hymn of the twentieth century. It pictures in a powerful and uncompromising way the sacrifices made by servants of Christ, in earlier times and still today.

1) So send I you to labour unrewarded,
To serve unpaid, unloved, unsought, unknown,
To bear rebuke, to suffer scorn and scoffing–
So send I you to toil for Me alone.

3) So send I you to loneliness and longing,
With heart a-hung’ring for the loved and known,
Forsaking home and kindred, friend and dear one–
So send I you to know My love alone.

5) So send I you to hearts made hard by hatred,
To eyes made blind because they will not see ,
To spend–though it be blood–to spend and spare not–
So send I you to taste of Calvary.

Powerful words, and reflective of the experience of many believers–some of whom have even experienced martyrdom (“to spend, though it be blood”). But years later, Miss Clarkson wrote, “I began to realize that this poem was really very one-sided; it told of only the sorrows and privations of the missionary call and none of its triumphs. She regretted the sombre tone of the song, and wrote another, a corrective, fitted to the same tune.

1) So send I you–by grace made strong to triumph,
O’er hosts of hell, o’er darkness, death, and sin,
My name to bear, and in that name to conquer–
So send I you, my victory to win.

3) So send I you–my strength to know in weakness,
My joy in grief, my perfect peace in pain,
To prove My pow’r, My grace, My promised presence–
So send I you, eternal fruit to gain.

4) So send I you–to bear My cross with patience,
And then one day with joy to lay it down,
To hear My voice, ‘Well done, My faithful servant–
Come, share My throne, My kingdom, and My crown!

Questions:
1) In what ways have you experienced the painful sacrifices in your service for Christ, described in Miss Clarkson’s first hymn?

2) How have you experienced the sustaining grace and blessings described in the second song?

Links:
Wordwise Hymns (Margaret Clarkson)
The Cyber Hymnal (Margaret Clarkson)
Hymnary.org (Margaret Clarkson)


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