I’m just trying to do my part to preserve some of the great legacy of gospel music and hymns the church has enjoyed! (It would be tragic to completely neglect it, abandon it and forget it!) …
I had my devotions this morning (I call them “coffee with the Lord”) and read the following words in my Bible (a psalm of David)…
“Save me, O God! For the waters have come up to my neck. I sink in deep mire, where there is no foothold; I have come into deep waters, and the flood sweeps over me. I am weary with my crying out; my throat is parched. My eyes grow dim with waiting for my God… O God, you know my folly; the wrongs I have done are not hidden from you… But as for me, my prayer is to you, O Lord. At an acceptable time, O God, in the abundance of your steadfast love answer me in your saving faithfulness. Deliver me from sinking in the mire; let me be delivered from my enemies and from the deep waters. Let not the flood sweep over me, or the deep swallow me up, or the pit close its mouth over me. Answer me, O Lord, for your steadfast love is good; according to your abundant mercy, turn to me. Hide not your face from your servant, for I am in distress; make haste to answer me!” (From Psalm 69)
After reading those words this morning I was reflecting on how I felt when I became aware of my own sinfulness and spiritual poverty! I rehearsed my own sense of helplessness, lostness, and depravity! I felt like I was sinking in sin and despair and I was helpless to save myself from sin’s grip and consequences! And as I thought about the feelings I had before I experienced the mercy and grace of God, this old gospel song came to mind (and the words expressed my sentiments perfectly – along with the message of Psalm 69!)…
“In loving-kindness Jesus came
My soul in mercy to reclaim,
And from the depths of sin and shame
Through grace He lifted me!
“He called me long before I heard,
Before my sinful heart was stirred,
But when I took Him at His word,
Forgiven! He lifted me!
“His brow was pierced with many a thorn,
His hands by cruel nails were torn,
When from my guilt and grief, forlorn,
In love He lifted me!
“Now on a higher plane I dwell,
And with my soul I know ’tis well;
Yet how or why, I cannot tell,
He should have lifted me!
“From sinking sand He lifted me!
With tender hand He lifted me!
From shades of night to plains of light,
O praise His name, He lifted me!
–Chas. H. Gabriel, 1905