O Rock of Ages – Hide Thou me

By Doyle Lawson -1944 –

Sometimes I feel discouraged….and I think my work in vain….
I’m tempted oft to murmur, to grumble, and complain….
But when I think of Jesus…and what He’s done for me…..
Then I cry to the Rock of Ages…..Hide Thou me…..

O Rock of Ages….Hide Thou me…..
There’s no other refuge….none can save but Thee…..
Through life’s dark vail I wander….so far, far from Thee….
Then I cry to the Rock Of Ages….Hide Thou me…..

I have a friend in Jesus….blest anchor of my soul….
I feel His presence ever….when stormy billows roll…..
And when I think of Jesus…and what He’s done for me….
I cry to the Rock of Ages…..hide Thou me…..

Sometimes I feel I cannot…go one step farther on…..
My body’s growing older….and faltering steps begun….
But when I think of Jesus and what He’s done for me….
I cry to the Rock Of Ages….hide Thou me…

This song was written by Doyle Lawson. I first heard this song on the Gaither Vocal Band and in my research on this song I found out it was one of those Grand Ole Opry tunes. Doyle Lawson was born on April 20, 1944 in Ford Town, a part of Sullivan County, near Kingsport, TN, to Leonard and Minnie Lawson. His two brothers were James and Les, and the sister was called Colleen. Doyle Lawson is an American bluegrass and gospel musician. He is best known as an accomplished mandolin player, vocalist, producer, and leader of the 5-man group Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver. Doyle Lawson was inducted into the International Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame in 2012.

The family loved the sound of music and listened to The Grand Ole Opry. His father, mother, and sister all sang gospel music when he was young. They were members of trios and quartets that sang a cappella music in churches and at revivals, and such. No doubt, that was where he acquired his love of quartet music. Doyle’s Father passed away in 1994, but his Mother still lives in Kingsport, TN.

Doyle grew up listening to the Grand Ole Opry on Saturday nights. This is where he became inspired by Bill Monroe, the “founding father” of bluegrass, and his band the Blue Grass Boys. His own instrumental piece, “Rosine,” is a tribute to Monroe’s birthplace and features, among other things, strains from the singer’s 1967 instrumental “Kentucky Mandolin.”

Doyle became interested in playing the mandolin around the age of eleven so his father borrowed a mandolin from Willis Byrd, a family friend and fellow musician. Doyle taught himself how to play the mandolin by listening to the radio and records, and watching an occasional TV show. His love for music grew and Doyle decided to learn to play the guitar and banjo as well.

Every year Doyle hosts the Doyle Lawson and Quicksilver Festival in Denton, North Carolina. He has one son, Robbie,and two daughters Suzi and Kristi. Kristi gave birth to the Lawson’s first grandchild, Spencer, in July 2007.

Doyle rededicated his life to Jesus in May 1985 and is a member of Cold Spring Presbyterian Church.

A couple of comments on the song

  • I’m tempted oft to murmur, to grumble, and complain….There are a couple of phrases worth sharing from this song because of some scriptures that they evoke. There is theology in this hymn but more still reinforcement of specific verses and promises found in the Word. Think of Philippians 2; 14-  NIV – “Do everything without complaining or arguing.”  The Message is this – “Do everything readily and cheerfully—no bickering, no second-guessing allowed!” This song says, when we think of Jesus and what He’s done for us, I hope it puts those kinds of things in perspective, and removes the temptation to murmur, grumble, and complain.
  •  There’s no other refuge….none can save but Thee….. Psalm 18:2 says “The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.”  This Psalm was written by David when he was delivered from the hands of his enemies and from Saul.  During difficult times in our lives, I hope we can say with confidence, as David did, the Lord is my rock.  The Lord is my refuge.  The Lord is my shield.  He promises to be those things for us, but it is our job to look to Him to be those things.  The world often seeks refuge in other things.  Entertainment, money, “things,” drugs, alcohol.  Those are not places of refuge.  This hymn reminds us that there is no other refuge – none can save but Him.  What a powerful truth!
  • I feel His presence ever….when stormy billows roll….. Isaiah 4:6 It will be a shelter and shade from the heat of the day, and a refuge and hiding place from the storm and rain. Psalm 27:5 For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent and set me high upon a rock. Psalm 55:8 I would hurry to my place of shelter, far from the tempest and storm.” Jesus is a Rock in a weary land, a shelter in the time of storm. In times of trouble he is a hiding place

This hymn is a prayer that one might find a hiding place in the Lord.  A time to escape the pain and trouble of this world, and be hidden by God’s almighty hand.  Jesus Christ is alive and well and seated on the throne of heaven (Ro. 8:34). He is the One who was promised as a hiding place from the wind and a shelter from the tempest.
At His ascension, He told his disciples that all power of heaven and earth had been given to Him. Therefore or because He held all power, we were to go forth and make disciples in all nations. Then He said, “Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen (Mt. 28:18-20).”

The disciples were living in times just as perilous or more so than today, yet they obeyed the commands of the Great Commission. They had no regard for life or property. Their only desire was to advance the kingdom of God. They had all things common and even sold their lands and laid the money at the apostle’s feet (Acts 4:32).

I am sure many of us have been at places in our lives where our prayer have been Oh Rock of Ages hide thou me..  We pray “O Lord.  Be My Refuge.  Protect me by your Hand.  Hide Thou Me.”  The question is, are we more like the kids who prefer to “hide” and not “seek?”  Maybe our prayer is “Hide me from the consequences of my actions.”  “Protect me from my foolishness, folly, or disobedience.”  We are asking to “hide” because we didn’t “seek” His direction in certain areas of our lives.

I hope that we are like David when he wrote in the Psalms about taking refuge in the Lord – finding that hiding place.  But I hope we also seek His face like David did.  We seek His direction for our lives.  We seek to know Him more.  A balanced life of both “Hiding and Seeking.”


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