Jen Bosen Jen Bosen is a full-time mother to two marvelous girls. She dabbles in baking, belly dancing, photography, and making her fixer-upper home a little less ugly. She and her family live in Chandler, AZ. You can read more from Jen on her blog, Nothing Can Come of Nothing.

All posts by Jen Bosen:

  • Hymn #207: It Came Upon the Midnight Clear

    It came upon the midnight clear, That glorious song of old, From angels bending near the earth To touch their harps of gold: “Peace on the earth, good will to men From heav’n’s all-gracious King.” The world in solemn stillness lay To hear the angels sing. My favorite part of the Christmas story as told […]

  • Hymn #166: Abide with Me!

    My little sister spent a couple years at one college before deciding to transfer elsewhere and take her studies in a different direction. She moved to a new city where she didn’t know anyone. She shared a dorm room with a girl who was rarely there. For someone as social as my sister, it was […]

  • Hymn #150: O Thou Kind and Gracious Father

    I love the simplicity of this prayer, for that is what this particular hymn is: a prayer to our Father in Heaven. The soaring first lines acknowledges His greatness and goodness and our comparative insignificance: O thou kind and gracious Father, Reigning in the heav’ns above, Look on us, thy humble children; Fill us with […]

  • Hymn #226: Improve the Shining Moments

    Improve the shining moments; Don’t let them pass you by. Work while the sun is radiant; Work, for the night draws nigh. We cannot bid the sunbeams To lengthen out their stay, Nor can we ask the shadow To ever stay away. Well. This is awkward. Of course I would write about a hymn vilifying […]

  • Hymn #79: With All the Power of Heart and Tongue

    With all the pow’r of heart and tongue, I’ll praise my Maker in my song. Angels shall hear the notes I’ll raise, Approve the song, and join the praise. The closing hymn in my ward’s sacrament meeting last Sunday was “The Lord Is My Light”. That’s a hymn which, unlike this one, I know well […]

  • Hymn #319: Ye Elders of Israel

    It’s kind of a shame that this hymn was pigeonholed in the “Men” section of the hymnbook. It’s understandable, of course, given that it’s addressed to the “elders of Israel”, which could very easily mean “the men of the church”. But it’s such a marvelous missionary anthem, on par with “Called to Serve” I think, […]

  • Hymn #115: Come, Ye Disconsolate

    Come, ye disconsolate, where’er ye languish; Come to the mercy seat, fervently kneel. Here bring your wounded hearts; here tell your anguish. Earth has no sorrow that heav’n cannot heal. I’ve got a firm testimony that sorrow and anguish are part of the mortality package deal. Between disease, aging, injury, and constant physical needs, living […]

  • Hymn #111: Rock of Ages

    My great-grandmother passed away when I was nine. Hers was the first funeral I remember attending. Any sadness I felt was mostly borrowed; I was too young to really grasp the situation, and she had been old and sick as long as I could remember. My memories of that day are few: my mother comforting […]

  • Hymn #301: I Am a Child of God

    This is one of the first hymns LDS children learn. The melody is simple, the words straightforward. It’s difficult to find anything to say about it because the message is so clear: I am a child of God and my goal in life is to learn and do all that is necessary to return to […]

  • Hymn #340: The Star-Spangled Banner

    If you’re like me you haven’t thought too much about the national anthem of the United States of America. It’s moving and majestic and a little bit hard to sing those high notes, but once it’s been sung we move on quickly to our football game/parade/fireworks show/insert your favorite activity here. Which is kind of […]

  • Hymn #27: Praise to the Man

    Today marks 170 years since Joseph Smith was martyred at Carthage Jail in Illinois. It’s been a long time. To put it into perspective, the United States has only been a country for 238 years, and the signing of the Declaration of Independence seems like it was forever ago. What has happened in 170 years? […]

  • Hymn #116: Come, Follow Me

    “Come, follow me,” the Savior said. Then let us in his footsteps tread, For thus alone can we be one With God’s own loved, begotten Son. This hymn is so familiar. Just having read those words, you’ll probably have the tune stuck in your head for a while. And it is such a simple phrase: […]

  • Hymn #147: Sweet Is the Work

    The work doesn’t feel very sweet today. It feels heavy and sad and a little bit futile. Many things are weighing on my mind and my spirit, and a hymn of triumph and joy is not exactly fitting for my mood. But the text of this hymn brings me hope. I love the Lord. I […]

  • Hymn #221: Dear to the Heart of the Shepherd

    In this hymn version of the parable of the lost sheep (see Luke 15) we seem to have a few different types of “sheep”. The most frequently mentioned group is “the sheep that have wandered.” They are also called “lambs that are lost” or “straying”, and I think we can assume that at one point […]

  • Hymn #87: God Is Love

    It’s summer where I live. In many places around the world, summer is something to look forward to, with its promise of popsicles and fresh produce and beautiful weather. Here, however, summer just means hot. Sweating to death, celebrating when you find a parking spot in a tiny scrap of shade, cranking the air conditioning […]

  • Hymn #85: How Firm a Foundation

    How firm a foundation, ye Saints of the Lord, Is laid for your faith in his excellent word! What more can he say than to you he hath said, Who unto the Savior for refuge have fled? This is a hymn that gets a lot of play time, and rightfully so. It’s upbeat. It’s uplifting. […]

  • Hymn #121: I’m a Pilgrim, I’m a Stranger

    I’m a pilgrim, I’m a stranger Cast upon the rocky shore Of a land where deathly danger Surges with a sullen roar, Oft despairing, oft despairing, Lest I reach my home no more. A pilgrimage is a journey, often a long one, to a sacred or holy place. Often the financial burden of a pilgrimage […]

  • Hymn #71: With Songs of Praise

    For my soul delighteth in the song of the heart; yea, the song of the righteous is a prayer unto me, and it shall be answered with a blessing upon their heads. (D&C 25:12) Music is a huge part of Latter-Day Saint culture. Our first hymnal was published only five years after the church was […]

  • Hymn #32: The Happy Day at Last Has Come

    While Philo Dibble includes a lot of detail in his hymn about the “happy day” that “at last has come”, he doesn’t specify what day precisely about which he was writing. Was it the day of Joseph Smith’s first vision? The day he received the plates from Moroni? The day the church was officially organized? […]

  • Hymn #199: He Is Risen!

    Today is Good Friday, acknowledged (if not necessarily “celebrated”) by Christians all over the world as the day Jesus was crucified. The events of that day have come to represent Christianity itself, as the cross and crucifix are now universally recognized symbols used by nearly every Christian faith. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day […]

  • Hymn #270: I’ll Go Where You Want Me to Go

    In 2002 my husband was called to serve in the Ivory Coast Abidjan mission. He packed his bags, got dozens of immunizations, and headed to the Missionary Training Center where he diligently began learning how to teach the gospel in French. Not long after he entered the MTC, civil war broke out in Ivory Coast. […]

  • Hymn #108: The Lord Is My Shepherd

    Despite Hollywood’s prolific use of Psalm 23 in funeral scenes and the fact that this hymn is categorized under “funeral” in the LDS hymnal, it wasn’t until the 20th century that “the valley of the shadow of death” began to be associated with actual death. And honestly, the psalm upon which “The Lord Is My […]

  • Hymn #276: Come Away to the Sunday School

    After I had my first baby, church suddenly got really hard. I spent much of the three-hour block nursing my tiny daughter in the mothers’ lounge, bouncing her in the halls, and changing diapers in the bathroom. My husband helped out as much as he could–we took turns attending classes and fulfilling our respective callings–but […]

  • Hymn #38: Come, All Ye Saints of Zion

    Come, all ye Saints of Zion, And let us praise the Lord; His ransomed are returning, According to his word. In sacred song and gladness They walk the narrow way And thank the Lord who brought them To see the latter day. Given that it was written by none other than W. W. Phelps–printer of […]

  • Hymn #103: Precious Savior, Dear Redeemer

    I don’t know about you, but when I think of Jesus Christ I often focus on his power and majesty. He is the Son of God! He is the King of Kings! Sure, he loves us enough to die for us, but that fills me with more awe and wonder than anything else. To use […]

  • Hymn #105: Master, the Tempest Is Raging

    For anyone who has read New Testament this story is a familiar one, included in two of the four gospels, and it begins in a boat. And there arose a great storm of wind, and the waves beat into the ship, so that it was now full. And he was in the hinder part of […]

  • Hymn #281: Help Me Teach with Inspiration

    I hope the other Beesley Project contributors will forgive me for speaking for them in this post, but this hymn? This is what our little project is all about. It’s our aim and our prayer with every post we write. Help me teach with inspiration; Grant this blessing, Lord, I pray. Help me lift a […]

  • Hymn #96: Dearest Children, God Is Near You

    I don’t believe in using scare tactics on children. They always seem to backfire. Either you wind up with a nervous kiddo who is paranoid about the tiniest things, or one who no longer believes anything you say because they proved you wrong by not wetting the bed after playing with the campfire. I have […]

  • Hymn #20: God of Power, God of Right

    After spending some time with this hymn, I think it’s a pity that it isn’t sung more often. It’s of a handful that takes up less than a page in the hymnbook, but it contains a profound lesson about God’s process of turning ordinary people like you and me into celestial beings. The hymn begins […]

  • Hymn #65: Come, All Ye Saints Who Dwell on Earth

    Ah, enduring to the end. It’s a common theme in LDS doctrine and will undoubtedly be revisited time and time again as we examine the hymn book this year. It can feel tiresome after a while. “Again?” you roll your eyes. “Do we have to talk about enduring to the end again?” Yes. And here’s […]

  • Hymn #134: I Believe in Christ

    If ever there was a hymn written to confirm that Mormons are indeed Christians, it’s this one. Just as the Articles of Faith lay out the basics of Latter-Day Saint doctrine, this hymn explains in fairly simple terms what we believe about Jesus Christ. It’s like a manifesto of our Christianity. Eight times we sing, […]

  • Hymn #311: We Meet Again as Sisters

    I have to confess: I’ve agonized over this hymn all week. Every time I read the title, I am reminded of all the jokes I’ve heard about the sisters of the church having meetings to plan their upcoming meetings. The sarcasm isn’t unwarranted. When I think about all the things women are involved in or […]

  • Hymn #304: Teach Me to Walk in the Light

    This is one of the few hymns included in both the LDS hymnal and the Children’s Songbook. Its melody is simple, its message sweet. Its words are straightforward enough for a small child to understand, and it is from a child’s perspective that we begin to sing. Teach me to walk in the light of […]

  • Hymn #60: Battle Hymn of the Republic

    When Julia Ward Howe penned new words to the popular Union soldier song, “John Brown’s Body”, she drew an overt parallel between the Abolitionist movement and the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. It was a bold move. It paid off, though, as Battle Hymn of the Republic is now among the most beloved patriotic songs […]

  • Hymn #72: Praise to the Lord, the Almighty

    This arrangement is a translation of a German chorale based on Psalms 103 and 150. The text is essentially a list of reasons why God is deserving of our praise. He is our health and salvation. He prospers and defends us. He shows us goodness, mercy, and love. Amen and amen. As with any translation, […]