An Alternative, Christian, Patriotic Song of Peace

a song of peace, especially appropriate as so many on the East Coast of the US are struggling in the wake of the mighty storm…

During election season, there is often a lot of talk of American exceptionalism (“this is the greatest country on the face of the earth!”) that sounds a lot like arrogance to those from other places.  I discovered this song in the wonderful Rise Up Singing songbook, and have sung it since with fellow mission co-workers, as it is found in the newest Presbyterian hymnal.

There’s nothing wrong with loving one’s country because it is one’s own country–but I think it is always important to remember that God is the God who welcomes people from all nations to the feasting table.

This is my song, O God of all the nations,

A song of peace for lands afar and mine.

This is my home, the country where my heart is;

Here are my hopes, my dreams, my sacred shrine.

But other hearts in other lands are beating,

With hopes and dreams as true and high as mine.
My country’s skies are bluer than the ocean,

And sunlight beams on cloverleaf and pine.

But other lands have sunlight too and clover,

And skies are everywhere as blue as mine.

O hear my song, O God of all the nations,

A song of peace for their land and for mine.

May truth and freedom come to every nation;

May peace abound where strife has raged so long;

That each may seek to love and build together,

A world united, righting every wrong;

A world united in its love for freedom,

Proclaiming peace together in one song.

This is my prayer, O Lord of all earth’s kingdoms:

Thy kingdom come; on earth thy will be done.

Let Christ be lifted up till all shall serve him,

And hearts united learn to live as one.

O hear my prayer, thou God of all the nations;

Myself I give thee, let thy will be done.