Welcome!  Hymns have been and continue to be a real source of inspiration to me.  My desire in this blog is to share special hymns with my readers hoping that the words will minister to them, especially in times of great personal need.  If one of these hymns ministers to you, please take time to leave a comment so that I know that my blog is helping others as much as it helps me. Sometimes I will also provide a link where you can go to hear the hymn played.  So, please join me here each week and sing along as we praise God together.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

JESUS I AM RESTING, RESTING



        This beautiful hymn has always been one of my favorites, not only because of the tune and harmonies, but because of the powerful, meaningful words of testimony.  The words were penned in 1876 by Jean S. Pigott (1845-1882) and the music, Tranquility, was provided by James Mountain (1844-1933).  Little is known about Pigott except that she was born in Ireland and was one of eight children.  She is known to have written only two hymns, this one and Lord Jesus, Thou Didst Keep Thy Child.  While her second hymn is not well known, here are a few words from that one.

Lord Jesus, Thou dost keep Thy child
Through sunshine or through tempests wild;
Jesus, I trust in Thee:
Thine is such wondrous pow'r to save;
Thine is the mighty love that gave
Its all on Calvary.
One of the interesting things about this week's hymn choice is the impact that it had on the life of the famous missionary to China, Hudson Taylor.  It is said that it was his favorite hymn.  Whenever work permitted, Mr. Taylor was in the habit of turning to a little harmonium for refreshment, playing and singing many a favorite hymn, but always coming back to?  "Jesus, I am resting, resting, in the joy of what Thou art; I am finding out the greatness of Thy loving heart."  An evangelist, George Nichol, was with Taylor on one occasion when he received news of serious rioting in two of the older stations of the Mission. Thinking that Taylor might wish to be alone, the younger man was about to withdraw when, to his surprise, Taylor began to whistle. It was the soft refrain of the same well-loved hymn, "Jesus, I am resting, resting, in the joy of what Thou art . . . "  Turning back, Mr. Nichol could not help asking, "How can you whistle, when our friends are in so much danger!"  "Would you have me anxious and troubled?" was the quiet reply. "That would not help them, and would certainly incapacitate me for my work. I have just to roll the burden on the Lord."   Day and night this was his secret, "just to roll the burden on the Lord." Frequently those who were awake in the little house at Chinkiang might hear at two or three in the morning, the soft refrain of Mr. Taylor's favorite hymn. He had learned that for him only one life was possible, that blessed life of resting and rejoicing in the Lord under all circumstances.  An interesting part of this story is that Pigott's own brother, Thomas, was also a missionary to China.  On July 9, 1901 he was executed at the age of fifty-three, along with seventy-six other Christian missionaries, in the Boxer Rebellion at the Sheo Yang Mission uprising. It is said that his sister's beautiful hymn was a special comfort to Hudson Taylor during that difficult time.  Some form of the word "rest" is found over 500 times in our English Bibles. Bible teacher J. P. Vold wrote, "[To rest] is to stop one's own work because of satisfaction with God's work …. It is that joyous acceptance of what God has done which causes us to stop trying to achieve by our own works [i.e. trying to earn acceptance with God by our own efforts]."   As you consider the words of Pigott's hymn, notice three qualities which are shared - trusting fully in the Lord, experiencing peace and tranquility in Him, enjoying contentment and satisfaction with Him.  The final words of verse four are a great daily prayer for each of us. "Keep me ever trusting, resting, fill me with Thy grace."   May that be your desire as you rest in the provision of the Savior this week.

1.     Jesus, I am resting, resting,
In the joy of what Thou art;
I am finding out the greatness
Of Thy loving heart.
Thou hast bid me gaze upon Thee,
And Thy beauty fills my soul,
For by Thy transforming power,
Thou hast made me whole.
Jesus, I am resting, resting,
In the joy of what Thou art;
I am finding out the greatness
Of Thy loving heart.

2.     O, how great Thy loving kindness,
Vaster, broader than the sea!
O, how marvelous Thy goodness,
Lavished all on me!
Yes, I rest in Thee, Belovèd,
Know what wealth of grace is Thine,
Know Thy certainty of promise,
And have made it mine.
Jesus, I am resting, resting,
In the joy of what Thou art;
I am finding out the greatness
Of Thy loving heart.

3.     Simply trusting Thee, Lord Jesus,
I behold Thee as Thou art,
And Thy love, so pure, so changeless,
Satisfies my heart;
Satisfies its deepest longings,
Meets, supplies its every need,
Compasseth me round with blessings:
Thine is love indeed!
Jesus, I am resting, resting,
In the joy of what Thou art;
I am finding out the greatness
Of Thy loving heart.

4.     Ever lift Thy face upon me
As I work and wait for Thee;
Resting neath Thy smile, Lord Jesus,
Earth's dark shadows flee.
Brightness of my Father?s glory,
Sunshine of my Father?s face,
Keep me ever trusting, resting,
Fill me with Thy grace.
Jesus, I am resting, resting,
In the joy of what Thou art;
I am finding out the greatness
Of Thy loving heart.

Listen to it here.    LISTEN

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

How beautiful the Hudson Taylor's testimony about the hymn! I enjoyed reading it.