Our God Goes

With Us

Words and music: David Kai Tune: Lemon Creek

This hymn reflects the history the Centennial Japanese United Church (David Kai's home congregation) as well as its future hopes. The form of the hymn is similar to “Spirit of Gentleness” by Jim Manley, in which the work of the Spirit in the bible is depicted in chronological order. In this hymn the work of the Spirit is depicted during Japanese-Canadian history and the ongoing story that led the Toronto Japanese United Church Nisei to worship at, and eventually amalgamate with the Centennial United Church. The chorus is an affirmation that no matter where we go and whatever the future holds, we need not fear, for God goes with us. Just as God’s presence, symbolized by the Ark of the Covenant, traveled with the people of Israel through their years of wandering in the wilderness, so God moves with us. In all our journeys, God has always gone with us, for us and 'fore us.

Chorus: Our God goes with us wherever we may roam,

Our God goes with us, makes each new place our home,

As God goes with us we live by faith, not fear,

Thanks be to God, ever ‘fore us, ever near.

The Spirit moved, blew boats across the sea, brooded in hearts that struggled to be free,

New life, new faith, new challenges to dare, through blood, sweat, toil, bitter tears, our God was there. (Chorus)

The Spirit wept as hatred’s flames were fanned, as trains of tears streamed from the promised land,

In lonely mountain paths our God was found, Faith, hope and love making ghost towns holy ground. (Chorus)

The Spirit urged, go forth and start anew, rebuild my church, a sanctuary true,

Welcomed by friends, their paths entwined as one, stronger united with ev’ry rising sun. (Chorus)

The Spirit leads; the future, still unknown, is not to fear, we trust in God alone,

Be with us still as we move on again, strengthen, inspire us, our Saviour and our Friend. (Chorus)

To watch the video, click here.

The hymn is free to use, but please report any use to One License or CCLI.

Click here to download the lyrics. An adaptation for more general use is also included.

Click here to download the lead sheet.

Click here to download the full accompaniment version.

A video called "A Ghost Town Tour" which gives some of the historic background behind this hymn is available at this link.

For more information, contact David Kai at davidwkai@gmail.com

Please report any congregational use to One License or CCLI.