“I Want to Walk as a Child of the Light” was written in the sweltering hot summer of 1966 by Kathleen Thomerson, an Episcopalian organist. Kathleen had moved to St. Louis, Missouri in the fall of 1995. The following summer, her mother came from Houston, Texas, to visit. Because an airline strike cancelled her mother’s travel plans and a heat wave was making St. Louis unbearable. Thomerson decided to drive her mother back to Houston. This hymn came to her as she anticipated visiting her “brothers and sisters in Christ at the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer in Houston.” It was written as a scriptural meditation and prayer. It was inspired by many Bible verses, including Genesis 1:17; Isaiah 60:19; Psalm 75:16; Psalm 139:12; Ephesians 3:17; 5:8; Galatians 4:6; Hebrews 1:3; 1 Thessalonians 5:5; 2 Peter 1:19; 1 John 1:5-7; and Revelation 21:23.
On one, hand it may be sung as a prayer for illumination. The congregation sings “Shine in my heart, Lord Jesus.” The second stanza conveys a longing to see Jesus and to be led through Christ to the presence of the Father. On the other hand, it may be sung as a song of dedication. The worshiper commits to live in the light of Christ, singing, “I want to walk . . . I want to see . . . I’m looking for . . .” And in hope and anticipation, the worshiper concludes in stanza 3, “When we have run with patience the race, we shall know the joy of Jesus.” (From Reformed Worship, Sept. 2008, No. 89)
I want to walk as a child of the Light I want to follow Jesus God set the stars To give light to the world The Star of my life is Jesus.
In Him there is no darkness at all The night and the day are both alike The lamb is the Light of the city of God Shine in my heart Lord Jesus.
I want to see the Brightness of God I want to look at Jesus Clear Son of righteousness shine on my path And show me the way to the Father.
I’m looking for the coming of Christ I want to be with Jesus When we have run, with patience, the race We shall know the joy of Jesus.