Every year we set a theme that will focus and guide us through our year of learning together, loving one another, and serving the God who has so richly blessed us. This year we have drawn from the beloved hymn, Day by Day,’ which has been sung in Tuesday chapel at EDS for longer than most people can remember.
This hymn is also sung annually at Alumni Chapel, when the high school seniors who left us four years prior, or more in some cases, return to worship with us in the place that held their prayers and praises for so many of their most formative years. These seniors, on their way to colleges all over the country, take both joy and pride (even amidst the giggles) in singing Day by Day,’ even with the hand motions they learned as young children. It’s an important reminder to them of what matters most – and it is an equally meaningful and grounding reminder for us all. These words – this theme – serve as a reminder of our faith commitment, and we will benefit (and be blessed) by having them held before us this year. Above all things and in all things … we must seek to see God at work in our lives and in the world around us; we must love God and all the Children of God whom we encounter each day; and no matter where life may take us, we must follow the One who has brought us and blessed us so far; all as the hymn reminds us.
These beloved words were first penned by Saint Richard of Chichester (1197-1253) in a prayer: Thanks be to thee, my Lord Jesus Christ, for all the benefits thou hast given me, for all the pains and insults thou hast borne for me. O most merciful redeemer, friend and brother, may I know thee more clearly, love thee more dearly, and follow thee more nearly, day by day. And the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, be upon you and remain with you this day, this new year, and forevermore. Amen. This year we will reflect on these commitments of faith, and we will do our very best to live them out day by day!