Then the quail came

The 13th UCA Assembly in July 2012 closed with worship, with the ‘sermon’ provided by President Rev Prof Andrew Dutney in a song – the beautiful ‘Then the Quail came’. In the midst of our human journey, and our grumbling and discontentment, God provides for our needs. How, then, can we not but bow down? (There are recordings by Noel Paul Stookey and Peter Campbell, and of course a brilliant live version by Andrew Dutney! Sound sample here)

Then the Quail Came Michael Blanchard

There we were, out on a desert, wishing we never had come
Homes on our backs, dust in our hair, cursing the day we’d begun

“Tell me I ask you,” a friend of mine said,
“Was it so bad where we were?”
“We sure didn’t need to come here to be dead, was what we had so unsure?”
    Then the quail came, falling like dew on the ground
    The quail came, each evening our food to be found
    And taking our curses and turning ’em round
    And filling our ears with those ungrateful sounds
    Unworthy to stand
    I bow down

There we were, angry and naked, looking for someone to blame
Our bodies were aching, babies were crying
And each day was so much the same

“I tell you people, this journey is pointless.”
I heard someone say in his rage

“How long will it be ’till we come to our senses

And get back to where we were safe?”

 Then the quail came, falling like dew on the ground
    The quail came, each evening our food to be found
    And taking our curses and turning ’em round
    And filling our ears with those ungrateful sounds
    Unworthy to stand
    I bow down

Here we are, alone on a desert, fed dawn to dark, dusk to day
Each morning we wake up. to find just the measure
Of food we’ll require for the way

Oh once I’d have asked just a little bit more
To insure that our future survived
But  now I know now at last, that the only thing sure
Is that at evening the quail will arrive

Then the quail came, falling like dew on the ground

    The quail came, each evening our food to be found
    And taking our curses and turning ’em round
    And filling our ears with those ungrateful sounds
    Unworthy to stand
    I bow down

 

About admin

Rev Sandy Boyce is a Uniting Church in Australia Minister (Deacon) in placement at Pilgrim Uniting Church, in Adelaide CBD (12 Flinders St). This blog is mainly to resource worship planners for our services, but of course may be useful for others. We have some great writers of music, words for hymns and liturgy at Pilgrim, so this blog also includes their words.
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