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I wasn't helped by attending the funeral of a wealthy man who had chosen "Guide me, O thou great Redeemer." The order of service contained a misprint (accidental or otherwise) which replaced "Land me safe on Canaan's side" with "Land my safe on Canaan's side."
Like many people, I believed the song 'Lord of the Dance' said "I am the lord of the dance settee," rather than "I am the lord of the dance said he." I had images of people getting up and boogying on this settee. Which, due to childish word connections, happened to be our grey and black settee.
For months my younger brother went around asking everyone what a "looya" was. He kept insisting he had learned a song at school about a girl named "Glori" that "had a looya". It wasn't until he sang the song that we realized he was singing "Glory, glory Hallelujah". That was about 10 years ago, but we still tease him for it.
My mum said that when I used to sing "noahs arc" at school I would sing "who built the arc, no one, no one"
My sister used to think the words to the Christmas song "Little Donkey" were "Got a teapot, plodding onwards" instead of "got to keep on, plodding onwards"!
At VBS (vacation bible school) there was a song that promised that we would "learn to seek Your face, and the knowledge of your grace...", which I heard as "learn to sink Your face", whatever that meant. I ultimately decided that it meant washing Jesus' face (almost as good as washing someone's feet).
My next best involved a series of songs that refered to Jesus as "the rock". (Lord you are my Rock, On Christ the solid rock I stand, etc) Well, I was appalled! If I were the ruler of the universe, I would want to be compared to something fierce, like a lion, or a tiger; comparing Jesus to something as inanimate as a rock seemed to border on an insult. It took me a while to come to terms with this one.
Our church frequently sang the hymn, "Lead On, Oh King Eternal." Among kids, it was, "Lead On, Oh Kinky Turtle."
There used to be a hymn we sang in church when I was young. The hymn used to terrify me and I was scared to go to church every Sunday. Now I know that the words are "Dance, dance, where ever you may be, for I am the Lord of the Dance, said he and I'll meet you all where ever you may be and I'll meet you all at the dance, said he" (or something very close to this). When I was young, however, I thought it went "Dance, dance, where ever you may be, for I am the Lord of the dance settee and I'll eat you all where ever you may be and I'll eat you all on the dance settee"
Not mine, but my husband's -- and not that long ago. He cracked up the choir during a church service by singing "There is a bomb in Goliad!" Considering that a very important battle during the Texas war for independence from Mexico was fought at Goliad, he did have a point.
One time in sunday school, they were asking what song we wanted to sing. Well there is a song called "Father Abraham". Well, I never knew the songs name and I told them I wanted to sing "Father Lincoln" thinking it was named for the president.
When my son was little he came back from church and said that they had sung his favourite hymn about the drains. I asked him to sing the song to me and he sang 'Guard our drains, guard our drains' instead of 'Our God reigns, our Gods reigns'.
My Mom could never figure out who Round John was. As in Round John, Virgin Mother and Child. Or rather as it should be Round yond Virgin, Mother and Child from Silent Night
Growing up, I would sing "He is Exhausted" instead of "He is Exalted." It wasn't until I belted it out in church one day that my mom about choked trying not to laugh...needless to say I was informed that God doesn't tire very easily. <><
when I was about 4 or 5, I thought Jesus must have had a fancy-dress policeman's uniform just like mine - "The little law Jesus
Laid down his sweet head"
- and obviously, being God, he was allowed to sleep in it
Hymns were my problem:
I am the Lord of the dance settee (rather than 'said he'), and picturing Jesus jumping upand down on a sofa.
Then there was 'goat tell it on the mountain'...
I wondered why in church we had to sing "how great thou aren't" and I would (luckily)would clam up when ever that line came up.
When I was little, I didn't know that "want" used to mean "need" as in "needy," so I thought that when you said, "The Lord is My Shepherd, I shall not want," you didn't want the Lord being your Shepherd & wished he would just go away.
I also thought that at Christmastime you sang, "Round yon virgin," because she was round, because she was pregnant with Jesus.
I also thought that the choir at Compline was singing about "God the Holy Parakeet." I still don't really know what a paraclete is.
As a young child I attended church with my parents. We used to sing a song which had the words "Victorious Christ" in. I always wondered why He was Victoria's and not anyone elses. My dad did an amazing job of keeping a straight facee when I asked him!
"A Wain in a Manger
No crib for the bairn"
Were the first lines to "Away in a Manger" according to my brother-in-law from Glasgow.
We used to sing 'there is a green hill far away without a city wall' at school. I thought it meant that every hill should have a wall built around it! By the time I'd become a Christian as an adult the words had been changed to 'outside a city wall' I understood then that Jesus was crucified on the grotty bit of rubbish dump that no-one wanted to live on - quite a revelation.