TIMELESS HYMN #7 - Another revised and repeated blog of one of the great hymns of the faith - TURN YOUR EYES UPON JESUS - originally shared on January 1, 2009
What are the most important things in your life? Maybe one really only thinks about this question when faced with death or the loss of loved ones. Then you realize how unimportant material things really are, especially when you need to need clean up an estate after a death. Things that once seemed important now are things to be discarded, distributed, taxed, or sometimes even fought over. Then you realize even more that the important things in life are relationships, especially those with your loved ones. You now miss the chance to be with them, to share your joys and your sorrows, and to seek their advice. We all need someone to be our friend ... someone who cares about us ... someone who cheers us ... someone who is always there ... someone who accepts us for who we are ... someone we can trust. But even our loved ones can fail and disappoint us. There is really only one friend who is always faithful, and that is Jesus. He alone should be all the world to us, our life, our joy and our all. He can be our strength from day to day and our friend in trials sore. Will Lamartine Thompson (1847-1909) was born in Pennsylvania. He showed an early interest in music and had written several songs before even finishing high school. As a young man, Thompson sent a package of four songs to a publisher, asking payment of $100 for the package of four. The publisher responded with a counteroffer of $25, which Thompson declined. When he couldn't get what he considered to be a fair price for his music, Thompson decided to go into business for himself. He quickly became successful, even founding his own publication company. Hebecame known as the millionaire "Bard of Ohio." Even though he became quite rich, Thompson continued to live a life of service. He supported various civic and religious activities generously. He was also aware of the fact that small town people had very little exposure to good music, so he loaded a piano on a horse-drawn wagon and went through small Ohio towns giving concerts of his music. Thompson was a Christian, and while attending a Dwight L. Moody evangelistic meeting, he decided to devote himself to writing and promoting Christian music. While he wrote and published many hymns, in one of his most moving hymns, Thompson described what Jesus had meant in his life. He wrote, "Jesus is all the world to me". This song seems to express his own testimony in directing his talents to the service of the Lord. To see the purpose of our life in terms of acquisition and the accumulation of possessions is shortsighted. It fails to consider eternity and to prepare for it. As the Lord Jesus said, "What profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?" (Matt. 16:26). Even the wealth of all the world is not worth the sacrifice of one's eternal soul. As you consider the words of this song this week, honestly ask yourself if this is your true testimony. Can you say, "I trust Him now, I'll trust Him when life's fleeting days shall end. Beautiful life with such a Friend, beautiful life that has no end; Eternal life, eternal joy, He's my Friend."
1. Jesus is all the world to me, my life, my joy, my all;
He is my strength from day to day, without Him I would fall.
When I am sad, to Him I go, no other one can cheer me so;
When I am sad, He makes me glad, He's my Friend.
2. Jesus is all the world to me, my Friend in trials sore;
I go to Him for blessings, and He gives them over and o'er.
He sends the sunshine and the rain, He sends the harvest's golden grain;
Sunshine and rain, harvest of grain, He's my Friend.
3. Jesus is all the world to me, and true to Him I'll be;
O how could I this Friend deny, when He's so true to me?
Following Him I know I'm right, He watches o'er me day and night;
Following Him by day and night, He's my Friend.
4. Jesus is all the world to me, I want no better Friend;
I trust Him now, I'll trust Him when life's fleeting days shall end.
Beautiful life with such a Friend, beautiful life that has no end;
Eternal life, eternal joy, He's my Friend.
Listen to it here. Here are some choices for you.
A trio LISTEN1
A solo LISTEN2
A quartet LISTEN3