878

God, We Honor You

Scripture References

Confessions and Statements of Faith References

Further Reflections on Confessions and Statements of Faith References

When we sing about the offering of our gifts, we quickly find several thoughts interwoven with each other. The first is the foundational thought that God’s generosity in Christ has brought us salvation and all good things in life. God has “created heaven and earth and all other creatures from nothing” (Belgic Confession, Article 12) and he continues to “provide whatever I need in body and soul” (Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 9, Question and Answer 26). But God’s greatest act of generosity is shown in the gift of his Son “by a most perfect love” (Belgic Confession, Article 20) through whom we find the forgiveness of our sins and eternal life. This generosity of God is always in the background of each song in this section.

 

God’s children are called to respond thankfully to God’s generosity. Our gifts, therefore, take on the nature of a testimony of thankfulness to our generous God. We aim that “with our whole lives we may show that we are thankful to God for his benefits, so that he may be praised through us” (Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 32, Question and Answer 86). Indeed, all our living, including our gifts, are intended to show “how I am to thank God for such deliverance” (Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 1, Question and Answer 2). It is natural, therefore, that our giving of offerings is accompanied with songs that express this gratitude.

878

God, We Honor You

Additional Prayers

A Prayer of Acclamation
 
God, we honor you.
God, we trust in you.
 
We honor you as the supreme and unsurpassable sovereign.
We trust in you as the just and faithful covenant partner.
 
God we honor you.
God, we trust in you through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
— Cornelius Plantinga, Jr.
878

God, We Honor You

Tune Information

Name
ABUNDANT BLESSINGS
Key
D Major
Meter
Irregular
878

God, We Honor You

Hymn Story/Background

James Clemens, the author and composer, writes:
 
My family attended a Mennonite congregation in Harrisonburg, Virginia. Although we already sang from four different hymn collections, we felt the need for another offering hymn that expressed the wide range of gifts we shared. Since the group especially enjoyed singing canons, this song soon became a frequent part of our Sunday mornings.
 
I started with the text, as I almost always do, but since I wrote the tune the same day (probably within the same hour), it could be that text and tune influenced each other from the start.
— James E. Clemens

Author and Composer Information

James E. Clemens (b. 1966) is a singer, violinist, jazz pianist, and composer who writes music for choir, orchestra, piano, strings, brass, voice and various ensembles. He spent most of his childhood in Goshen, Indiana, and now he and his wife, Angie, are musicians with an emerging Mennonite community in Dayton, Virginia. In 2010, a collection of thirty of his hymns tunes and songs with texts by David Wright was published entitled A Field of Voices: Hymns for Worship. In addition to composing, Jim is a professional music engraver. 
— Emily Brink

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