Shards of Glass
About the Song
In the early 1800s, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints began the construction of a temple in Kirtland, Ohio (USA). Unlike Solomon’s temple, filled with all the gold and riches a King could command, this temple was built by an impoverished people who had few resources. But to make this building a beautiful and worthy tribute to the God they loved, they were willing to sacrifice and give what they had. Men, women and children alike worked night and day to help build and guard the temple. And when the time came to plaster the walls, they brought their china and glassware to crush and add to the mixture for the outside of the building, making the walls sparkle and shine in the sunlight.
I have always loved this story of sacrifice and dedication, and I find in it some great parables.
Some of the early church members had china to contribute–the story is often told of a family who contributed their heirloom Dresden china for the purpose, though there is no historical evidence for the tale. However that may be, I’m even more affected by the majority of the contributors, who brought their plain dishes and glassware. It may not have been so impressive or intrinsically beautiful as Dresden china–but it was no less a sacrifice, and it was an equally beautiful part of the temple walls in the sunlight.
I hope I can remember that no matter how humble my offerings may be, the Lord can make these simple things as beautiful as gold… or Dresden china.
Sheet Music Downloads
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Recording featuring vocals by James Loynes:
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Of humble men the Savior made
disciples, strong and true
He fed the hungry multitude
with meager loaves and few
With simple faith; with earthly clay
He turned the blind man’s night to day
Showing us what simple things can do
He can take our broken shards of glass
to color temple walls
He can mend our broken places
and make temples of us all
He can do miracles
With small and simple things
Making saints of sinners
Changing servants into kings
With a little child the Savior taught us
what we must become
And by familiar things we learn
His precepts one by one
With candlelight; with birds in flight;
With broken bread; a widow’s mite
He showed us how His Father’s work is done
Offer Him your humble gifts,
the treasures of your soul
He will make these simple things
beautiful as gold
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