April 2012 - Vol. 59
 

I Will Awake the Dawn
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song and music by Ed Conlin

Awake, O harp and lyre, awake the morning!
First light of day descends to lift my soul.
Your presence greets me, 
stirs me to seek Thee;
I come to do Your will.

Open my lips oh Lord, 
my mouth shall sing Your praise,
Open my eyes to see Your hand this day!
My heart is steadfast, for Lord Your love is steadfast,
I will awake the dawn.

In You my soul takes refuge, Your wings protect me,
You come from Heaven and You rout my foe.
I cry to You Lord, I am delivered,
I praise Your faithfulness!

I will give thanks to You Lord, 
among the peoples,
Among the nations Ill sing praise to You;
O be exalted, highly exalted,
Your glory to the skies!
 

Click here to listen to an mp3 audio clip of the song

song and words: Ed Conlin
vocalists: Stevie Jordan, Ellen Karagoulis, and Susan Dick
Album title: Overwhelmed
Produced by Detroit Summer Outreach and released in December 2010 

Ed reflects on the song

I Will Awake the Dawn is based on Psalm 108. I got the inspiration for the song during an early morning time of common prayer with the Servants of the Word brothers in our Detroit household. I remember the morning well. It was a heavy foggy summer morning. We all knew that we had before us a hot, hard day of work. We were all involved in the Detroit Summer Outreach program. Soon we would be joining others for our outreach project of the day as well as some street work with homeless addicts.

As we chanted Psalm 108, I particularly sensed that God wanted to fill us with his joy for this new day of service for him. During a time of spontaneous praise I began to sing out the words of the song, and the tune flowed from there. The brothers joined in, singing along with the refrain. They helped me develop the song and got me to lower the key some since I tend to sing far too high for them especially in the early morning when our voices are groggy. Though the song remains higher than comfortable for most people for morning prayer, I feel it brings a lightness and joy to the early morning time of prayer together.

I particularly also love the chorus as it opens with the Servants of the Word dawn prayer we say each morning as we wake...O Lord, open my lips and my mouth shall declare your praise!

Ed Conlin is a member of the Servants of the Word, a missionary brotherhood of men living single for the Lord. He lives in community in the inner city of Detroit, Michigan, USA, and works as a licensed substance abuse counselor and chaplain with Capuchin Franciscan Ministries in Detroit.
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