You Are the Light is an anthem I wrote starting on the feast of the Epiphany, January 6th, and ending on January 27th. While I had to work a while on the music, a modern yet baroque influenced contrapuntal texture, the lyrics are really what took the longest time to create. The implications of Christ’s message that we are the light of the world are quite powerful, and so I took the approach of turning this around to see ourselves as a reflection of Christ’s light, eventually offering the idea that it is in our union with the Divine that the fullest light can enter the world. It is certainly a Christian hope that even in the darkest of nights, the dawn will break. The lyrics are printed below.
You are the light of the world, the Morning Star,
Your brightness pierces the found and the lost,
Cradle and cross are your thrones, your crown, a dream,
High is the cost, tears redeem, love can scar.
I am the light of the world, the waxing moon,
A dim reflection of glory unknown,
Quiet, alone, in the darkness my debt is paid,
Never at home, love is laid in my tomb.
Upon the altar of night, the dawn is born,
A sky of flames giving birth to the sun,
Heaven is won in a dance of divinity,
Your will is done, love set free, curtain torn.
- © C. W. Powell, 2017
At the end of our Eucharist this Sunday, we will process out into the world singing the beloved hymn, Crown him with many crowns. The fourth verse specifically speaks of the immortal light of the heavenly places. Our collect of the day asks God to free us from bondage and sin. Our final hymn this Sunday gives us a vision of what that freedom might look like.
Crown him of lords the Lord, who over all doth reign,
who once on earth, the incarnate Word, for ransomed sinners slain,
now lives in realms of light, where saints with angels sing their songs before him day and night,
their God, Redeemer, King.