HE KEEPS ME SINGING
Words and Music by Luther B. Bridgers, 1884–1948
If you obey My commands, you will remain in My love, just as I have obeyed My Father’s commands and remain in His love. I have told you this so that My joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. (John 15:10–11)
Joy is the flag which is flown from the castle of the heart when the King is in residence there.
Joy should be one of the chief characteristics of our Christian faith. In the New Testament the word chara is used 53 times to mean “joy.” Only a joyful exuberant Christian is a worthy representative of the transforming power of Christ’s gospel. But what is spiritual joy? It is much more than mere laughter or even happiness. It is a life that is at rest in the Lord, regardless of life’s circumstances. Such a life cannot help but have a strong impact on nonbelievers. If there were more singing Christians, there would be more Christians.
Often our finest and most effective songs are sung during the midnight experiences of life. It is easy to sing when all is well. But to sing when all is dark requires the indwelling presence of Christ. Luther Bridgers, a Methodist pastor and evangelist from Georgia, is believed to have written both words and music for this joyful hymn in 1910, following the death of his wife and three sons in a fire at the home of his wife’s parents while he was away conducting revival meetings in Kentucky.
There’s within my heart a melody—Jesus whispers sweet and low, “Fear not, I am with thee—peace, be still,” in all of life’s ebb and flow.
All my life was wrecked by sin and strife. Discord filled my heart with pain; Jesus swept across the broken strings, stirred the slumb’ring chords again.
Feasting on the riches of His grace, resting ’neath His shelt’ring wing, always looking on His smiling face—That is why I shout and sing.
Tho sometimes He leads thru waters deep, trials fall across the way, tho sometimes the path seem rough and steep, see His feet-prints all the way.
Soon He’s coming back to welcome me far beyond the starry sky; I shall wing my flight to worlds unknown; I shall reign with Him on high.
Chorus: Jesus, Jesus, Jesus—Sweetest name I know, fills my ev’ry longing, keeps me singing as I go.
For Today: Psalm 40:3; Proverbs 29:6; Isaiah 12:3, 5; 52:9; Acts 16:25; Ephesians 5:19
Determine to live with a singing spirit; be a truly “praising Christian.” Carry this musical testimony with you as a help, knowing that—