From the sick ward…

Posted in From Al & Libbie, Reflections, Updates at 3:18 pm by Libbie

Well, today Alden is finally well enough to be back in school (hopefully, since he’s feeling neither terrific nor strong), but last night Eowyn woke up in the middle of the night with chills and fever, so she’s home today. (And coincidentally Alasdair has developed bronchitis.) Please pray that Al will not catch any of the germs in this hive of sickness!

Al felt a little better yesterday than the day before, it seemed to me, which was great. Today he’s pooped and not feeling great. He is increasingly unsteady on his feet and lacking in any kind of energy, and typing is becoming extremely difficult. But he’s a tough old guy, and he keeps on truckin’, if you’ll pardon a 70’s expression.

The other night we had a worship time when all the kids were here, and someone requested a song that we haven’t sung in years, but that I especially like. Here are the lyrics. You’ll have to imagine the catchy tune.

Bloodwashed Pilgrim*
I saw a blood washed pilgrim,
a sinner saved by grace,
Upon the King’s highway, with peaceful, shining face;
Temptations sore beset him,
but nothing could afright;
He said, “The yoke is easy, the burden, it is light.”

Chorus(sung after every verse)
Then palms of victory, crowns of glory,
Palms of victory I shall wear.

His helmet was salvation, a simple faith his shield,
And righteousness his breastplate,
the spirit’s sword he’d wield.
All fiery darts arrested,
and quenched their blazing flight;
He cried “The yoke is easy, the burden, it is light.”

I saw him in the furnace; he doubted not, nor feared,
And in the flames beside him,
the Son of God appeared;
Though seven times ’twas heated,
with all the tempter’s might,
He cried, “The yoke is easy, the burden, it is light.”

‘Mid storms, and clouds, and trials,
in prison, at the stake,
He leaped for joy, rejoicing, ’twas all for Jesus’ sake;
That God should count him worthy,
was such supreme delight,
He cried, “The yoke is easy, the burden, is so light.”

I saw him overcoming, through all the swelling strife,
Until he crossed the threshold of God’s eternal life;
The crown, the throne, the scepter, the name, the stone so white,
Were his, who found, in Jesus, the yoke and burden light.

*(For those of you not familiar with this imagery, the Bible talks about Jesus’ followers being “pilgrims” in this world, passing through it on their way to their true home in heaven, and about our sins being washed away by the blood Jesus shed on the cross.)

The song reminded me that we’re heading for our real home with the King who gives us strength and walks with us now, which Al will likely reach before the rest of us, and it made me want to walk worthy of that high calling.
Got to go take care of my patients…

Love to all-



  1. Amy Givler said,

    January 25, 2007 at 3:56 pm

    Here’s a link to the tune of the hymn, which plays automatically. You need to scroll down to see the lyrics.

  2. Amy Givler said,

    January 25, 2007 at 3:57 pm


    Oops, it didn’t copy. Now there it is.

  3. Julie Kong said,

    January 25, 2007 at 7:32 pm

    Dear Libbie,
    Praying for you in the sick room today. I’m looking forward to hearing the hymn tune. With love to you all, Julie

  4. Becky Wilson said,

    January 26, 2007 at 11:08 am

    THANK you for this gift this morning – lyrics of TRUTH to sing through this day. Thank you for focusing us on the bigger picture, “the rest of the story…”
    I’m so glad God created music!


  5. Craig Combs said,

    January 26, 2007 at 2:10 pm

    Thank you both for sharing your family worship with us. I want to sing the pilgrim hymn, too.

    Just today I have been praying and confessing sin, seeking repentance and a better attitude, concerning a number of circumstantial things.

    If I were honest and boiled it all down, it would amount to nothing more than the fact that several things have not turned out in life the way I have anticipated or wanted.

    And the dark side of my inner mumbling, when all is said and done, is that it implies an accusation against God that he has not been as good as he ought to have been! God forbid such a thought! To think such a thing necessarily leads to embracing other lies, such as the one that says I have been good enough to deserve being treated better, and the one says that I am enough of an expert in good to render judgment on God’s goodness.

    Worse and worse, if I followed all of those to their implications, it would result in a belittling of the work of Christ on the cross, God’s ultimate act of goodness toward me!

    Save me from my sin, Jesus!

    Better is the pilgrim mindest that your blog has reminded me about, which Jesus embraces and passes on to all who are his: namely, I have been given riches immeasureable, and am headed for glory unimagineable while I am sustained by grace unequaled. The path I tread to get there is already blazed by the one who guides me and sustains me, and his word to me along the way is “the yoke is easy, the burden, it is light.”

    May the Lord forgive my mumbling, encourage me from stumbling and strengthen me from crumbling until I reach the goal – – – and may he continue to do the same for you, Al and LIbbie, and continue to use you to be a comfort to many.

    My love to you, with gratitude,

  6. Dan M said,

    January 28, 2007 at 8:33 pm

    I see you fighting, fearing believing and overcoming by his grace
    With you in the journey if perhaps a few steps behind.


  7. Anne C. said,

    January 29, 2007 at 8:16 am

    We are praying for your continued spiritual stamina and dreaming, with you, of a more glorious day. Nearer our God, to thee.

  8. Jenny said,

    January 29, 2007 at 3:02 pm

    Al and Libbie,

    In your sharing your struggles and your blessings we were so honored to share with you as we sang Bloodwashed Pilgrim on Sunday at church. It was an opportunity to hear our Lord’s Truth and a catalyst for prayer for you all. This song won’t be sung with out my being reminded to pray for you all!

    As you are in the furnace remember over and over that you are not alone. Jesus is standing there with you and He will not allow you to be consumed. Instead he consumes you with His love. Oh how I wish it could be more tangible at times of suffering, but it is none the less there!

    Peace, Jenny

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