Thursday, January 6, 2011

Brighten The Corner Where You Are

In 1913, gospel meetings were popular, spurring lagging faith with song, personal testimony, and shared experiences.  Ina Duley Ogden's wish as a young woman was to join the Chautauqua circuit as an evangelist and bring to thousands her strongly felt message of love and Christian belief.  Unfortunately, Mrs. Ogdon's father was an invalid who required constant care and attention.  Ina abandoned her dreams and decided to spend her life caring for her father.  She poured her heart into writing songs that would express her Christian faith.  When she wrote the lines, "To the many duties ever near you now be true," she could well have been thinking of dishwashing, sweeping and cleaning, which to her became work God had assigned her. 
Homer Rodeheaver, a famous evangelist, selected "Brighten The Corner Where You Are" as his theme song.  Thus, though she never reached the attention of thousands of people as a Chautauqua speaker, her message has come to millions through music.

Brighten The Corner Where You Are

Do not wait until some deed of greatness you may do,
Do not wait to shed your light afar,
To the many duties ever near you now be true,
Brighten the corner where you are.

Brighten the corner where you are!
Brighten the corner where you are!
Someone far from harbor you may guide across the bar;
Brighten the corner where you are!

Just above are clouded skies that you may help to clear,
Let not narrow self your way debar;
Though into one heart alone may fall your song of cheer,
Brighten the corner where you are.

Here for all your talent you may surely find a need,
 Here reflect the bright and morning star;
Even from your humble hand the bread of life may feed,
Brighten the corner where you are.


E Danmeri said...

Hi Janette,
Thanks for following me on Twitter @estherdanmeri. I came to visit your blog and I love this latest post. How did you come across this song? I love the lyrics and they fit perfectly with the inspirational aspect of your blog. As a singer myself I often find myself re-setting lyrics to new tunes. I start with just the words and then improvise a tune over and over until something strikes me as 'right'. Perhaps I'll do it with these lyrics as well. The only thing is that sometimes some of the words change as well but I never can tell in advance. I once found myself singing a new tune to 'Lord of the Dance' and found that I experienced the words of that song in a completely new way. I might just post that in my blog so you can hear how it turned out as well.
Best wishes

Janette Fuller said...

Thank you for reading this blog post. This song was published in 1913 so it is in the public domain. You could use it with a new tune, change the words or use it just as it is. I look forward to reading your blog.

E Danmeri said...

Fantastic, I'll see what happens and if a tune comes up then I'll make a video and let you know!

Leslie Maddox said...

Love it! I don't think I've ever heard this song before. The message is just as true now as it was then.

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