Be Thou My Vision

traditional irish lyrics and melody; english lyrics by mary byrne and eleanor hull

Be Thou My Vision Lyrics

 

Be Thou my Vision, O Lord of my heart;
Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art.
Thou my best Thought, by day or by night,
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light.

 

Be Thou my Wisdom, and Thou my true Word;
I ever with Thee and Thou with me, Lord;
Thou my great Father, I Thy true son;
Thou in me dwelling, and I with Thee one.

 

Be Thou my battle Shield, Sword for the fight;
Be Thou my Dignity, Thou my Delight;
Thou my soul’s Shelter, Thou my high Tower:
Raise Thou me heavenward, O Power of my power.

 

Riches I heed not, nor man’s empty praise,
Thou mine Inheritance, now and always:
Thou and Thou only, first in my heart,
High King of Heaven, my Treasure Thou art.

High King of Heaven, my victory won,
May I reach Heaven’s joys, O bright Heaven’s Sun!
Heart of my own heart, whatever befall,
Still be my Vision, O Ruler of all.

 

Alternate version:

Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart,

Be all else but naught to me, save that thou art;

Be thou my best thought in the day and the night,

Both waking and sleeping, thy presence my light.

 

Be thou my wisdom, be thou my true word,

Be thou ever with me, and I with thee Lord;

Be thou my great Father, and I thy true son;

Be thou in me dwelling, and I with thee one.

 

Be thou my breastplate, my sword for the fight;

Be thou my whole armour, be thou my true might;

Be thou my soul's shelter, be thou my strong tower:

O raise thou me heavenward, great Power of my power.

 

Riches I heed not, nor man's empty praise:

Be thou mine inheritance now and always;

Be thou and thou only the first in my heart;

O Sovereign of Heaven, my treasure thou art.

 

High King of Heaven, thou Heaven's bright sun,

O grant me its joys after victory is won!;

Great heart of my own heart, whatever befall,

Still be my vision, O Ruler of all.

 

 

Be Thou My Vision Guitar Chords

 

D          G         D          F#m  

Be Thou my Vision, O Lord of my heart;

A                         G              A

Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art.

G            D/F#        Bm        G   A 

Thou my best Thought, by day or by night,

Bm        F#m           G        A  D  

Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light.

 

Scripture References

  • Psalm 119:18 - Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law.
  • Deuteronomy 33:29 - Blessed are you, Israel! Who is like you, a people saved by the Lord? He is your shield and helper and your glorious sword. Your enemies will cower before you, and you will tread on their heights. "
  • John 15:5 - ...If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.

The Story

 

The words of this hymn actually date back to 6th century Ireland. Originally it was not set to music at all, but was a monastic prayer called Rop tú mo baile, attributed to Dallan Forgaill. It wasn't until 1905 that Mary E. Byrne translated the lyrics from ancient Irish to English. The words were put in lyric form by Eleanor Hull in 1912. The hymn eventually was paired with the traditional Irish folk tune Slane in a 1927 hymnal.

 

Sadly, we live in a generation today that seems all too willing to push God away. Technology has become a modern-day Tower of Babel. Who needs God when we have medical technology that can fix all kinds of diseases? Who needs God when there are so many ways to fill our lives, from reality TV shows, to social networks, to shopping, to going out drinking and having fun?

 

But of course, these things just fill your life temporarily, leaving an even emptier hole afterwards. But this hymn is a good reminder of what a full life really is. Fulfillment doesn't come from becoming rich or famous. It only comes from understanding that a full life comes from remaining in Christ, because with him, you can bear all kinds of fruit, and apart from Him, you can do nothing.

 

 

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