Internationally acclaimed Rend Collective Experiment has undertaken the task of understanding the famous hymn, “Be Thou My Vision,” subsequently translating it into a form and melody for contemporary worshippers. The resulting song, “You Are My Vision,” is featured on the band’s sophomore album, Homemade Worship By Handmade People.
“As we translated the song from the Irish and the old English, we soon realized the true meaning of the words were starting to get lost in our culture,” reflects Rend Collective Experiment member Gareth Gilkeson. “This is not a song of longing and asking God to ‘be our vision,’ but it is a song of declaration and faith. We say to God with strength, trust and humanity that ‘You are my vision, You are my wisdom… You are my battle shield.’ A confidence that we are his true sons and daughters and that He is dwelling inside us.
“While our culture moves faster than ever, we want to remind people of our deep past as God’s people,” continues Gilkeson. “We certainly don’t want to push tradition to the side and that is why instead of taking the old English version, which is only 100 years old, we have gone back to the original Irish, which is 1,400 years older.”
You are my vision oh King of my heart
Nothing else satisfies only You Lord
You are my best thought by day or by night
Waking or sleeping Your presence my light
“We chose to do this as a folk song because folk music is such a strong part of our DNA and, of course, this tune was originally a folk melody,” adds Gilkeson. “We hope this new translation of ‘You Are My Vision’ will capture the hearts and minds of the modern day church just as the older translation did in the past.”
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