Here is a hymn that to me is also a bluegrass classic. I have heard numerous bluegrass versions, both live and on recordings, and played some myself as solos and with other musicians. In fact, the first time I remember hearing it, I was very young and attending Vacation Bible School. A husband and wife were in charge of children’s music, and we sang this with great gusto, while he played guitar and she played mandolin. Ever since then, this hymn has always brought a smile to my face and comfort to my heart. It’s fun and relatively easy to play, and while it could also be played slowly, it has a hopeful spirit.
“Leaning on the Everlasting Arms” dates back to 1887. The melody, and lyrics to the refrain, were written by Anthony J. Showalter. Elisha Hoffman wrote the remaining lyrics.
My favorite verse is:
What have I to dread, what have I to fear,
Leaning on the everlasting arms;
I have bless-ed peace with my Lord so near,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.
I hope you enjoy listening to this lyre arrangement as much as I enjoy playing it!