How Dear To Me, O Lord Of Hosts – Hymn Lyric

Discover the deep love and longing for God's presence in "How Dear To Me

How Dear To Me, O Lord Of Hosts – Hymn Lyric



How Dear To Me, O Lord Of Hosts – Hymn Lyric

How dear to me, O Lord of Hosts,
The place where Thou dost dwell;
The tabernacles of Thy grace
In pleasantness excel.

My spirit longs, yea, even faints,
Thy sacred courts to see;
My thirsting heart and flesh cry out,
O living God, for Thee.

Beneath Thy care the sparrow finds
A place of peaceful rest;
Where she may safely lay her young
The swallow finds a nest.

Then, Lord of Hosts, my King, my God,
Thy love will shelter me;
Beneath Thy altar’s peaceful shade
My dwelling place shall be.

Blest they who dwell within Thy house,
Their perfect strength Thou art;
Their joyful praise shall never cease,
Thy ways are in their heart.

Their tears of grief, like early rain,
Sweet springs of joy shall fill;
With strength renewed they journey safe
To Zion’s holy hill.


Meaning of How Dear To Me, O Lord Of Hosts

How dear to me, O Lord of Hosts, is the place where Thou dost dwell. With these words, the hymn captures the deep love and longing for the presence of God in our lives. It speaks of the tabernacles of His grace, which excel in pleasantness. As we delve into the meaning behind this beautiful hymn, we can explore the themes of God’s love, shelter, and the joyful praise that comes from dwelling in His house.

The hymn begins by expressing the author’s profound affection for the place where God resides. It becomes a special sanctuary where one can experience the presence of the divine. Just as a home holds sentimental value and a sense of belonging, so does the dwelling place of God for those who seek Him. It is a place where hearts are touched, spirits are stirred, and where we can find solace in His loving embrace.

The hymn goes on to convey the deep yearning within the author’s spirit – a longing so intense that it causes the heart to grow faint. This thirsting, longing, and crying out for the living God resonates with many who have experienced the emptiness and longing that only He can fill. It is a reminder that earthly pursuits and worldly possessions can never truly satisfy the depths of our souls. Only when we turn our hearts and minds towards the divine can we find true fulfillment.

The hymn evokes imagery of nature to illustrate God’s care and provision. Just as the sparrow finds a place of peaceful rest and the swallow finds a nest to safely lay her young, so too does God offer us a place of safety and refuge. Under the shelter of His love, He offers protection, provision, and a sense of belonging. It is a reminder that no matter how turbulent life may be, we can find comfort and security when we trust in Him.

As the hymn continues, it addresses God directly as the Lord of Hosts, the King, and the God who shelters His children. It acknowledges His all-encompassing love and affirms the author’s belief that God’s love will also shelter and protect them. This belief is grounded in the understanding that His love is unfailing, unchanging, and ever-present, even in the midst of life’s storms. Like finding shade under an altar, the author finds peace and security in God’s loving embrace.

The hymn then expresses the blessedness of those who dwell within His house. It is as if the song is inviting us to join in the chorus of those who have experienced the joy of abiding in His presence. The true strength of these individuals comes from God, as they recognize that their perfect strength is found in Him alone. This acknowledgment demonstrates humility and a deep understanding of their own limitations, finding solace in leaning on the everlasting arms of the Creator.

The hymn also highlights the continuous praise that flows from those who dwell in God’s house. It becomes a never-ending song of joy, gratitude, and adoration. This joyful praise is not determined by circumstances but by a deep-rooted understanding of God’s ways. It is a recognition that His ways are beyond our understanding, yet they bring joy, peace, and fulfillment. It is a call for us to align our hearts with His, allowing His ways to shape our lives and fill us with an everlasting joy that goes beyond momentary happiness.

The hymn concludes with the image of tears of grief being transformed into sweet springs of joy. It speaks of the transformative power of God’s presence in our lives, turning sorrow into gladness, despair into hope, and weakness into strength. It is a reminder that the journey towards Zion’s holy hill, the perfect dwelling place of God, is not without its challenges. However, with renewed strength, fortified by the presence of the divine, we can persevere and find our way to that place of ultimate joy and peace.

In conclusion, “How Dear To Me, O Lord of Hosts” is a hymn that encapsulates the longing for God’s presence and the deep love that arises from dwelling in His house. It speaks to our yearning for peace, shelter, and a sense of belonging that only He can provide. The hymn reminds us that in His presence, we find strength, joy, and renewal. May these words inspire us to seek His dwelling place, experience His love, and share in the everlasting praise that flows from those who find refuge in Him.


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