Through the darkness of the ages

Through the darkness of the ages,
through the sorrows of the days,
strength of weary generations,
lifting hearts in hope and praise,
light in darkness, joy in sorrow,
presence to allay all fears,
Jesus, you have kept your promise,
faithful through two thousand years.

2. Bounty of two thousand harvests,
beauty of two thousand springs:
he who framed the times and seasons
has vouchsafed us greater things.
Word of God who spoke creation
speaks forgiveness, speaks to save,
gathers still his ransomed people
in the life he freely gave.

3. Countless flowers have bloomed and withered,
countless noons are sealed in night,
shattered thrones and fallen empires,
realms and riches lost from sight.
Christ, your kingdom still increases
as the centuries unfold.
Grain that fell to earth and perished
has brought forth ten thousandfold.

4. Master, we shall sing your praises,
Man of sorrows, God of power,
for the measured march of seasons
shall at last bring in the hour
when, as lightning leaps the heavens,
you return to lead us home.
You have promised, ‘I am coming.’
Swiftly, our Lord Jesus, come.

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