Come Rest From Your Labors (songs for healing)

Singing is important when you’re going through
times of struggle, illness, and despair.

This collection includes songs of healing, hope and encouragement. Whether you’re singing by someone’s side, or in a group longing for hope and healing, there’s a song in here I think you could use.  I compiled this resource with hospital chaplain and friend Bill Dexheimer Pharris (see comments below). We hope you can use these songs.

Find a song. Listen. Download.
Order a hardcopy to keep in your backpack.

photo credit: @emarieharp015 (

Lake Of Mercy
May What Is Right For Every Season
This Good Old Man
We’ll Come Shining Through
God Has Been With Us
In God’s Embrace
Bread For The Journey
Teach Us What It Means To Pray
Nothing Worth Doing
May You Rest
Slowly, Slowly the Evening Falls
Pour Out Your Heart
Juntos Creamos Espíritu
Everything That We Have
You Belong in This World
Letting Go
Be With Us Now
Come Rest From Your Labors
We Share the Peace
This Remains

Purchase full songbooks below; for single songs, click above

Forward from Bill Dexheimer Pharris

Bill Dexheimer Pharris, MDiv, BCC
Staff Chaplain
Spiritual Health Services
M Health Fairview
University of Minnesota Medical Center

“In my 25 years as a hospital chaplain, I have often turned to music as a powerful complement to pastoral care with patients and families. Music has a way of cutting through the fog of stress and pain, reaching people in a deep way that opens up new possibilities for healing in an environment that can be isolating and at times quite frightening. There are two songs I have turned to again and again, to sing with patients of a wide variety of spiritual traditions:  Bread for the Journey and Lake of Mercy, composed by my friend Bret Hesla, a singer/songwriter whose music has inspired and delighted me and so many others over the last three decades.  Both these songs, with simple melodies that seem to sing themselves from the first time they are heard, consistently evoke images and experiences of healing and wholeness during times when there is hope for physical healing, and just as readily in the sacred context of letting go at end of life. I have sung them hundreds of times but for me they have never become tiresome or stale, for they always seem to bring joy and strength to others at first hearing.

“When Bret asked for my assistance in putting together a collection of healing music, culled from his published work of more than 230 songs, I looked forward to expanding my personal repertoire of Bret Hesla songs to sing in my hospital setting, and I wasn’t disappointed.  I am eagerly learning these songs so I can share them with patients and families, and I hope other chaplains will be drawn to them as I have been. I’ve also been pleased to learn that many music therapists in my community have found Bret’s music extremely helpful and appropriate in their work of healing.

“I commend this music to all who seek  fresh and inspiring words and melodies to accompany and enrich their gifts of compassionate care for people who are hurting and hoping.”


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