Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Book Sneeze Review: Then Sings My Soul by Robert J. Morgan

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Imagine opening the wrapper on this book and realizing the pages are frayed as if it were a real songbook. Nice! This book contains sheet music on the first page of every new song title.

I enjoyed reading through the song book and regretted not having the ability to read sheet music! This book was organized in an easy-to-read, clear, concise yet interesting format.

One of my favorite accounts was on page 75. "I Will Sing of My Redeemer" was composed in 1874. Philip Paul Bliss had just written the music to "It Is Well With My Soul" when he and his wife grabbed the opportunity to sing at Moody's Tabernacle. Aboard the Pacific Express, a bridge collapsed. Many cars fell 75 feet into a snowy ravine. Philip survived the crash. He noticed fire had just broken out and Lucy was still inside. The other survivors urged him not to go back in. Philip gallantly stated, "If I cannot save her, I will perish with her," he shouted, plunging into the fiery car. Both died.

In his trunk which arrived in Chicago were the words to "I Will Sing of My Redeemer. " A wonderful ending to a very sad story.

Page 106 is a great story for the Pro-Life Movement!! You have to read it for yourself. Basically a couple finds out they are pregnant while they are in the midst of health issues and political instability.

I quote, "While pondering and praying about these things, we came to realize anew that our courage does not come from a stable world, for the world has never been stable. Jesus Himself was born in the cruelest of times. No, we have babies, we raise families, and risk living because the Resurrection is true! Our baby arrived safe and sound, and we named him Benjamin, which means "most beloved son.' A few weeks later 'Because He Lives' was born in our hearts and poured from our souls:

How sweet to hold our newborn baby
And feel the pride and joy he gives;
But greater still, the calm assurance -
This child can face uncertain days because He lives.

The name of the song? "Because He Lives." Though the song was composed in 1971, the words are for everyone in any situation. Reading about the stories behind the songs was not only interesting but inspiring as well.

Starting on page 127 were patriotic accounts. This book would be a great resource for not only a music teacher but a history teacher! I was not aware of many of the facts presented along with the words for "The Star Spangled Banner", "My Country "Tis of Thee", "Battle Hymn of the Republic" and more...

Happily, my favorite song of all time was included. I have heard the story of John Newton oodles of times but this resource gave me a new fact. There is a verse that Newton added to the end of the song but somehow those words seem to be forgotten for some reason. The words are:

The earth shall soon dissolve like snow, the sun forbear to shine;
But God, Who called me here below, shall be forever mine.

Who knew?

One critique I had (only had one) is the fact that this book would benefit from the inclusion of a picture under the title and year of each song. I do believe having a visual of the composer would give value and a serve as an homage to the person behind the hymn. However, the author most likely did not include a photo as this book really was all about glorifying God. Howeer, a suggestion would be to include some sort of artistic or photographic feature between the pages.

Then Sings My Soul by Mr. Robert J. Morgan is an amazing work and a wonderful gift to all who love the Lord, as worship is something we all will do on into eternity. Inspirational and educational all rolled into one with sheet music - this is a book that will remain on the book shelf or better yet - the music stand - to be referred to over and over again...

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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