Do not despise the days of small things!
Foragter ej de ringe dage

A hymn by N. F. S. Grundtvig, 1837, based on Zechariah chapter 4 verses 6 through 10.

"Do not despise the days of small things!"
was said when Israel again
a temple to the God of all things
was building in Jerusalem,
a shadow of the former one,
the temple of king Solomon.

"Do not despise the days of small things!"
is said to us, too, as we build
a house of God, the Lord of all things.
That word has us with comfort filled.
We build a house of humble state,
a shadow of God’s mansions great.

Do not despise that means are humble,
here helps no mighty, pow’rful hand.
Yet even mountain tops shall tumble:
God’s Spirit works as He has planned.
Let quiet, loving work proceed,
in time the works of hearts succeed.

As humble hearts in chests residing
so is our cottage church below.
But God the Spirit is providing
the glorious light by which we grow,
and as a cornerstone secure
God’s Word forever will endure.

Do not despise the days of small things!
It will succeed as Scripture says:
Our gracious Lord, the God of all things,
the feeble hands of men will bless.
Who the foundation humbly laid
shall see the house for which they prayed.

Copyright 2000 by Mogens Lemvig Hansen.

You may make copies of this hymn for a single event provided

  1. you include a copyright notice (Copyright 2000 by Mogens Lemvig Hansen) and source (, and
  2. you do not alter my translation except for the use of capital letters.
That means that you may include my translation on a song sheet to be used once, but you may not re-use the song sheet; you have to make another one - or ask me…

The canonical tune for this hymn is Wer nun den lieben Gott lässt walten = Hvo ikkun lader Herrren råde = If you but trust in God to guide you: 46kb .pdf file. The metre is 98.98.88 iambic.

The midi sequence of the tune linked above was kindly provided by Poul Christian Rasmussen. Last revised September 22nd, 2006.

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