This week when I wakened one morning, things didn’t look so bright, and I had a burden on my heart and some real problems to face. I thought of sharing the burden with others as soon as they would waken, but instead the Lord impressed on my heart that they had burdens of their own. Why not help bear and lighten their burdens instead of burdening them with mine?
Just then that old song came to my mind so forcibly that I began to sing it aloud. You remember this song:
There is sunshine in my soul today,
More glorious and bright
Than shines on any living way,
For Jesus is my light.
There is music in my heart today,
A carol to my King,
And Jesus, listening, can hear
The song I cannot sing.
There’s sunshine in my soul today.
Eliza Hewitt, 1887
Most of the words from the old song came back to me, and as soon as the others had heard, they were all singing. Then my own burden seemed much lighter, and I can assure you the day for all of us was brighter and some of the problems seemed to be half solved.
Did you ever try singing one of the old Gospel songs of victory the first thing in the morning before the ol’ Devil has a chance to show his teeth or blow his hot breath on you? Oh, it isn’t easy, but it does work. Try it sometime, especially when you don’t feel like singing. But I confess that it’s hard to sing the old Gospel songs with joy and satisfaction unless there is a song in your own heart.
I asked an acquaintance who used to sing a great deal for gatherings why she didn’t sing anymore, and she said, “I lost the song out of my heart.” I answered, “If that’s the case, you’ve lost the Savior, for He always puts a song in the heart.” I think it’s tragic and it’s such an empty thing to bear the name of a Christian, to have the name on some church roll, and not have the joy of the Lord in your heart.
Oh, that’s the wonderful thing about the Christian life; one of its most wonderful things is the joy of the Lord. God’s Word says, “The joy of the Lord is your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10), and “rejoice evermore” (1 Thessalonians 5:16). That’s God’s picture of a real Christian. It isn’t some mournful, long-faced person.
The Bible teaches that Christ puts a song in the heart. Here are a few verses, just a fraction from God’s Word that tells of the joy. “Ask and receive, that your joy may be full” (John 16:24). 1 Peter 1:8 speaks of “joy unspeakable,” and Matthew speaks a number of times of the joy of the Lord.35 Jude speaks of God being able to keep you from falling and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy (Jude 24).
Why all this joy in the Christian’s heart, this song that’s in his soul? Well, it’s because sins have been forgiven by the mercy of God through the sin-bearer on Calvary. Then is it any wonder when you think that we are heirs of God and joint-heirs with Jesus Christ, His Word tells us, and we have through this come into a great inheritance in the life that now is and also in the life to come! That puts a song in the heart; why, almost too grateful lips to ever sing it!
Have you lost your song? Take up the psalmist’s refrain: “Restore unto me the joy of salvation” (Psalm 51:12). Oh, my friend, pray it earnestly, sincerely. The Lord will restore the song to your heart. All the joy will come back, as God’s Word says in a number of places. He will turn the sorrow that’s mourning into joy (Jeremiah 31:13).
Will He restore? Will He forgive whatever it was that made you lose a song? He said, “I, even I, am He that blotteth out thy transgressions, and will not remember thy sins” (Isaiah 43:25). You turned your face away from Him. He didn’t turn His face away from you. But He says, “Return unto Me and I will return unto thee.”36 And I can testify to that, because through neglect of God’s Word for a while I lost the song. But I repented and asked forgiveness, and that verse of scripture, “He inclined unto me and heard my cry” (Psalm 40:1), became true and the song in my heart has been glorious and constant ever since. Indeed, the joy of the Lord has been my strength, like that wonderful song:
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 slumbering chords again.
Oh, when you take a look at what God expects of you, where He says that you must forgive others seventy times seven, won’t He forgive you then?38 And this time also, even again, He’ll forgive you. Why carry the burden of sin when God waits to forgive? And then the song of salvation will come ringing again in your hearts, and then you’ll say with the psalmist, “He hath put a new song in my mouth” (Psalm 40:3). As He promised in Psalm 32:7, “Thou shalt compass me about with songs of deliverance.” And in Psalm 77:6 he says, “He will give songs in the night, songs in the heart.” Even in the night of sorrow and affliction, this melody divine goes on and on in the soul, until you sing it with God around the throne.
There was one song in the beginning
Ere earth was formed or time begun;
When morning stars all sang together,
In adoration of the Holy One.
So there’ll be one song through countless ages;
There’ll be one song and one song alone.
That song will be of Christ the Savior,
The great Redeemer upon His throne.
When Christ was born in lowly manger,
The angel host with shining wings
Sang songs of praise and adulation
Above the cradle of the King of kings.
Oh, there’ll be one song through countless ages,
There’ll be one song, one song alone.
That song will be of Christ the Savior,
The great Redeemer on His throne.
When time has ceased and earth has vanished,
The ransomed souls of every race
Will sing one song in heaven’s glory,
When they shall see the Savior face to face.
There will be one song.
I wonder if there’s a song in your heart. If you’ll just turn toward Him, He’ll turn right toward you and accept you, love you as ever, and then the melody divine will begin in your heart again. God bless you. Give God a fresh chance in your soul.
He’s still on the throne. Prayer does change things.