Kneels at the feet of his friendsAuthor: Tom Colvin (1963)
Published in 29 hymnals
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Jesu, Jesu, fill us with your love,
show us how to serve the neighbors
we have from you.
1 Kneels at the feet of his friends,
silently washes their feet,
Master who acts as a slave to them. Refrain
2 Neighbors are rich folk and poor,
neighbors are black, brown, and white,
neighbors are nearby and far away. Refrain
3 These are the ones we should serve,
these are the ones we should love;
all these are neighbors to us and you.
4 Loving puts us on our knees,
serving as though we are slaves:
this is the way we should live with you. Refrain
|First Line:||Kneels at the feet of his friends|
|Title:||Jesu, Jesu, Fill Us with Your Love|
|Author:||Tom Colvin (1963)|
|Meter:||7.7.9 with refrain|
|Source:||Ghana folk solg|
|Place of Origin:||Africa|
|Refrain First Line:||Jesu, Jesu, fill us with your love|
|Copyright:||© 1969, Hope Publishing Co.|
|Article:||Hymn Performance: "I-to Loh Isn't There" by Eileen M. Johnson (from The Hymn)|
st. 1 = John 13:2-5
Tom Colvin (PHH 352), long-term missionary to Africa, wrote this text in 1963 in Chereponi, northern Ghana, while he was attending a lay-training course in agriculture, development, and evangelism. New converts had brought a folk melody to this meeting, which they thought might be appropriate for a text about Christian love. Colvin explained his writing of the text as follows:
Sitting there in the moonlight, I felt it simply had to be about black and white, rich and poor. I was ashamed of the wasteful affluence of my people but proud of the Gospel that transforms us into servants of one another. It is only when we who are rich learn to have the humility of the slave towards the poor of the world that we shall be able to learn from them; they have so much to teach us and share with us.
Colvin shared text and tune with the Iona Community in Scotland. After the hymn was published in their collection Free to Serve: Hymns from Africa (1968), its popularity spread to other Christian communities. It was also published in many other hymn books.
This fine text is based on Jesus' personalized object lesson on servanthood when he washed his disciples' feet (John 13:1-17) and on Jesus’ parable of the good Samaritan. That parable was his response to the question “Who is my Neighbor?” (Luke 10:25-37).
Many occasions of worship in which Christian servanthood is the theme, thus missions services and services that focus on diaconal work.
--Psalter Hymnal Handbook
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