“Do You Praise and Thank Him?”

"Be Thou exalted, Lord, in Thine own strength: so will we sing and praise Thy power" (Ps. 21.13)

     INTRO.: A song which encourages us to sing and praise the Lord’s power morning, noon, and night is "Do You Praise and Thank Him?" The text was written by Katharyn Bacon. I have been able to locate no further information about this author, except that in a Bibliography of Shape Note Hymnals entitled "Hymnals and Hymnody in the Appalachian Collection — A Bibliography," from the Carol Grotnes Belk Library of the Appalachian State University in Boone, NC, compiled by Brenda Gale Beasley in Spring, 2001, and updated by Ruthie Blakeney in Spring, 2005 ( www.library.appstate.edu/appcoll/research_aids/hymnody/index.html ) I found reference to a shaped-note hymnal "Lights of Home: A Collection of Sacred Songs, Both New and Old, for the Church, the Sunday School, the Revival Meeting, the Singing School, the Singing Convention and All Kinds of Religious Work and Worship compiled by George W. Bacon and Katharyn Baker" (this is undoubtedly a typographical error for Bacon because the actual library listing of the book identifies this person as Katharyn Bacon), at White Pine, TN, for the Sylva Music Co. in 1926. Assuming at least the possibility that George Bacon was some relation, perhaps husband, to Katharyn Bacon, I noted that there were two other shaped note hymnals which he edited: Then We’ll Sing in 1929, and Music That Wins with no date.

     The tune was composed by Austin Taylor (1881-1973). Born in Kentucky but spending most of his life in Texas, Taylor was a well known hymn writer, song director, and music publisher among churches of Christ.  Having taught his first singing school at age eighteen and published his first songbook, The Gospel Messenger, in 1905, he produced 200 hymns, published two dozen of his own books, worked as an editor for the Firm Foundation Company of Austin, TX, and served at the Texas Normal Singing School in Sabinal for 27 years. Some of his other famous hymns include "Closer to Thee," "Do All in the Name of the Lord," and "Home on the Banks of the River." I have not found out when or where "Do You Praise and Thank Him?" was first published. Among hymnbooks published by members of the Lord’s church during the twentieth century for use in churches of Christ, it appeared in the 1927 Sweeter than All Songs edited by C. M. Pullias; the 1959 Majestic Hymnal No. 2 and the 1978 Hymns of Praise both edited by Reuel Lemmons; and the original edition of the 1971 Songs of the Church edited by Alton H. Howard (but not after 1975 when it was replaced with "To God Be the Glory").

     The song talks about the importance of giving thanks to the Lord for His blessings at all times of the day.

I. Stanza 1 reminds us to thank Him in the morning
"Ere the morning lights the skies, Does there in your heart arise
Love to Jesus for His tender, watchful care?
Do you thank Him for the love That He sends from heaven above
To protect and lead you through the desert bare?"
 A. As we arise in the morning, it is a good time to direct our voice to God in thanks for His blessings: Ps. 5.3
 B. Certainly, one of those blessings for which we can be thankful is His tender, watchful care during the night: Ps. 121.4-6
 C. Also, we should thank Him for His great love in providing for our spiritual needs as well: Eph. 2.4-6

II. Stanza 2 reminds us to thank Him at noon
"When the noonday sun is bright, Do your hearts in love unite,
Praising Jesus for His blessings, rich and free?
Do you trust Him every hour For His mercy, grace, and power?
Do you trust His wondrous love eternally?"
 A. Noon time is the high point of the daytime which God has given us for work (often referred to in the Bible as the sixth hour): Matt. 20.1-5
 B. Yet, even while we are engaged in bearing the burden and the heat of the day, we should still take time to praise the Lord for His blessings, remembering that every good and perfect gift in life comes from above: Jas. 1.18
 C. Spending a few moments, if just silently in our minds, during the day to thank the Lord for His blessings is an expression of our trust in the Lord and His power: Ps. 37.3-5

III. Stanza 3 reminds us to thank Him in the evening
"When the shades of night appear, Do you kneel with hearts sincere,
Seeking Jesus’s watchful care till life is o’er?
Do you ask His love and peace To sustain, till life shall cease,
Till the Savior calls His own to heaven’s bright shore?"
 A. When the shades of night appear and we begin to make preparations for our rest, it is another good time to kneel before the Lord with hearts sincere to give thanks for the Lord’s blessings during the day: Ps. 119.55
 B. As we praise Him for His blessings, we can also ask His love and peace to sustain us: Ps. 55.22
 C. When we commit our way to Him we can have the assurance that He will guard and protect us until He calls us to heaven’s bright shore: Jn. 10.27-29

     CONCL.: The chorus focuses our minds once again on the importance of praising and thanking the Lord.
"Do you praise and thank the Lord, Every morning, noon, and night?
Do the blessings of His word Fill your soul with pure delight?"
Our books do not contain many hymns that are primarily devoted to being thankful ("Count Your Blessings" comes to mind; also "Now Thank We All Our God" and "Come, Ye Thankful People, Come," but they are not in as many of our newer books). Therefore, it is good to have a song by which we can ask each other, concerning our blessings from the Lord, "Do You Praise and Thank Him?"


One thought on ““Do You Praise and Thank Him?”

  1. Hymntime.com says that Mrs. Bacon was born around 1884, was living in Jefferson County, TN, in 1910 with her apparent husband, George W. Bacon, and is credited with some 299 hymns. In The Singers and Their Songs: Sketches of Living Gospel Hymn Writers Charles Hutchinson Gabriel wrote, “After reading the 145th Psalm, one Sunday afternoon in 1902, Mrs. Katharyn Bacon was impressed to write a poem from the 17th verse, using “The Lord Is Righteous” for a theme. This was the beginning of her literary career. Versatile, diligent, and enthusiastic, she has during the thirteen intervening years, written several hundred hymns, which have been set to music by our best known composers—W. H. Doane, W. J. Kirkpatrick, Adam Geibel, and others—besides a number of short stories, sketches, etc., for the secular press. Mrs. Bacon was born (1884) and still lives among the ‘hills of Tennessee.’” Hymnary.org gives her date of death as being July 29, 1961, but that is actually for another hymn writer, Josephine Daskam Bacon, who was born on Feb. 17, 1876, in Stamford, CT.


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