About This Song
This song was inspired by a poem, “The Hound of Heaven,” by the English poet, Francis Thompson, which was published in 1893. The theme that God loves us so much that he is willing to pursue us even when we would rather have nothing to do with him fascinates me. As one theologian has pointed out, many of us first encounter God as Stranger, then as Enemy and finally as Friend. St. Augustine and Bob Dylan also influenced the song, with Augustine contributing the insight that we are restless until we find our rest in the One for whom we were made (Confessions, Bk 1) and Dylan contributing the image of the Joker (“All Along the Watchtower”) which fits in nicely with the theme of the Divine Fool.
"Hound of Heaven"
by Doug McNeel

Running scared on the ridge they call the Great Divide,
Chasing rainbows and looking like crazy for the secret of life,
Holding on to my sanity, hanging on to my pride and my vanity,
I want to figure this out without any help all by myself.

Hound of Heaven won’t you please leave me alone.
Why do you seek me like an outlaw on the run?

The cards are dealt and I’m looking into a real strange hand.
There’s a Joker in the deck and the King of Hearts rules the promised land.
Bets are laid and the chips are real. I’m beginning to tremble and beginning to feel
This ain’t working out and I’m losing a game that I don’t understand.

My heart is restless and my soul unsatisfied.
The Hound of Heaven’s closing in and I’m feeling terrified.

I finally give up and lay down my cards at the Dealer’s command.
The King trumps all and I find myself in the Joker’s hand.
If the old shell cracks, the seed can grow.
If you die to self, true life can flow.
Keep your eye on the Joker
And you might catch a glimpse of the Promised Land.

Hound of heaven once my deepest enemy
I thank you now for loving me enough to set me free.

Hound of heaven, Hound of heaven, won’t you bring us all home.
Chase us down and make us sweat ‘till you call us your own.
Round us up and love us strong. Show us who you are and where we belong.
Hound of heaven, Hound of heaven won’t you bring us all home.

"Hound of Heaven" © 2009 McNeel Music, L.L.C.
About This Image
Yohan Perara

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