IN MY HEART THERE RINGS A MELODY
Words and Music by Elton M. Roth, 1891–1951
Sing to the Lord a new song, for He has done marvelous things; His right hand and His holy arm have worked salvation for Him. Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth, burst into jubilant song with music. (Psalm 98:1, 4)
King Solomon, one of the wisest men who ever lived, once made this observation: “A happy heart makes the face cheerful, but heartache crushes the spirit” (Proverbs 15:13). The medical profession has also long realized that happy people are the healthiest people. But how does one achieve that happiness—that joy? The child of God knows that it comes from living close to the Savior. And beyond that—joy experienced should also be joy expressed.
This ought to be true in our individual lives as well as when we gather in our church services. True worship must have the ingredient of festal joy. The Psalms insist that we “burst into jubilant song with music” and that we praise our God with “trumpet, lute, harp, timbrel, and loud crashing cymbals.” Too often believers give the impression that the Christian experience is a cheerless journey of harsh self-discipline that must be painfully endured until the heavenly rewards are finally realized. Little joy or praise is evident in such a testimony.
The author and composer of this hymn, Elton Roth, was a well-known musician of his day. It was while assisting with evangelistic meetings in Texas on a hot summer day in 1923 that the words and music for this hymn suddenly came to him. Mr. Roth recalls, “That evening I introduced the song by having more than 200 boys and girls sing it at the open air meeting, after which the audience joined in the singing. I was thrilled as it seemed my whole being was transformed into song.”
When our worship and personal experience are full of joy and song, it will be easier for our lives to encourage others to know this same happiness also.
I have a song that Jesus gave me; it was sent from heav’n above; there never was a sweeter melody; ’tis a melody of love.
I love the Christ who died on Calv’ry, for He washed my sins away; He put within my heart a melody, and I know it’s there to stay.
’Twill be my endless theme in glory; with the angels I will sing; ’twill be a song with glorious harmony, when the courts of heaven ring.
Chorus: In my heart there rings a melody, there rings a melody with heaven’s harmony; in my heart there rings a melody, there rings a melody of love.
For Today: 1 Chronicles 16:8–10; Nehemiah 8:10; Colossians 3:16
Consider thoughtfully—Am I truly a happy Christian? Does my life express the joy of the Lord? Does my church worship produce joy in my life? Ask God to change whatever may be lacking. Then sing joyfully as you go—