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Jesus Loves Me!

         The dimly lit room is quiet, my husband
lay resting, almost asleep.  I opened the
brown Favorites Hymnal to the page containing, “Jesus
Loves Me
”, and began singing quietly. 
My husband, now 91 years old, listens as I sing:
         Jesus
loves me, This I know – For the Bible tells me so.
Little
ones to Him belong, They are weak, but He is strong
.
         Tears form in my eyes and I realize not
just little ones are weak and belong to Him. 
Where did this song, so familiar, originate? This is the song I taught
my four children, and to other children at different churches.  Who wrote this simple song and why?
         This song reflects scripture, such as:
         Matthew 18:1-4 – About that time the disciples came to Jesus
and asked, “Who is greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven?”
Jesus called a little
child to him and put the child among them.
 Then
he said,
“I tell you the truth, unless you turn from
your sins and become like little children, you will never get into the Kingdom
of Heaven.
So anyone who becomes as humble as this
little child is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.
         Galatians 4:6-7 – And
because we are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our
hearts, prompting us to call out, “Abba, Father.”
Now you are no
longer a slave but God’s own child. And since you are his child, God has made
you his heir.
         What gives us strength when our bodies
ache and tire, and we complain about constant confusion?  The answer is a walking and talking
relationship with a Friend and is always with us.  Our Friend, Jesus, gives us undeserved Love
and His Light.
         Jesus
loves me still today, Walking with me on my way.
     Wanting
as a Friend to give, Light and Love to all who live
.
         And who is this Jesus?  This Jesus Who came to this earth as a little
babe, leaving His Father God in Heaven, to live among us?  He gave his life to make a way for us to be
His Friend and Brother. He was resurrected from the grave, and appeared to many
on earth before returning to His Father in Heaven.
         Jesus is our Living Hope.  He opened the Gates of Heaven wide, and
washes away our sin.
         “Jesus loves me! He who died, Heaven’s gate to open wide;
      He will wash away my sin, Let His
little child come in.”
         Who would write such simple lyrics to a
song that traverses our globe giving Hope and Joy?
         Anna Bartlett Warner, born August 31,
1827, and died January 22, 1915.  The
family lived near the US Military Academy at West Point.  Anna and her sister Susan began writing poems
and stories to supplement the family income when their lawyer father lost much
of his fortune in the 1837 depression.
         Not only did Anna and
Susan Warner write, they also taught the young soldiers from the West Point
Academy Bible classes on Sunday. Sharing the love of Jesus became Anna’s
passion in life. Both Anna and Susan Warner were honored for their influential
teaching of Jesus and are buried on the grounds of the Academy. 
         One of the 1860’s best selling novels
is Say and Seal, written by Anna Warner. In one chapter a young
boy is near to death, and one of the characters in the book comforts the boy
with the poem, “Yes,
Jesus loves me!
Yes, Jesus loves me! Yes, Jesus loves me! The Bible tells me so.”
     The boy passes away quietly after hearing these
words. This poem was quoted often during the unrest of a divided United States
during the Civil War on battlefields and in homes.  This simple story of the Gospel gave great
peace to all who read or sing these words, continuing to this day.
         William Bradbury wrote a melody for
this poem, and published it in 1854. 
More than hundred years after this song was published, this song is
known in many languages around the world.   
         Anna and Susan Warner made a choice to
give what was most precious to them – God’s Word through writing and teaching.  In doing so, they made a difference in the
lives of many, then and now.  The
question is ours daily, how do we choose to live here on earth? What is most
precious to us, and how can we share? 
It’s the choices we make…
         The
choices we make each day
     And
the words we choose to say
     Affect
more than me, I know
     When
I live for more than me
     In
his Love and Compassion, I’ll grow
     And
His Amazing Grace, I will at last see!
 
(EAC)
         For the word of the Lord holds true,
and
we can trust everything He does.
 He loves whatever is just
and good;
the
unfailing love of the
Lord fills the earth.
  Psalm 33:4-5.
         So the Lord must wait for you to come to him
so
he can show you his love and compassion.
For the Lord is a
faithful God.
Blessed are those who wait for his help.
  Isaiah 30:18.
         Jesus replied, “All
who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and
make our home with each of them.
 Anyone
who doesn’t love me will not obey me. And remember, my words are not my own.
What I am telling you is from the Father who sent me.
John 14:23-24.
         But
those who obey God’s word truly show how completely they love him. That is how
we know we are living in him.
 Those who say they live in God should
live their lives as Jesus did.

I John 2:5-6.

         And may you have the power to understand, as
all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love
is.

May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great
to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of
life and power that comes from God.
  Ephesians 3:18-19.



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