Life is full of ups and downs. The ups are great. When life is going well we are filled with a joyful spirit and a positive outlook on each day. But when the shadows of the downs roll in it can be a challenge to see beyond the darkness of the struggle before us. One of the benefits of our singing praises to God are the encouraging words we have come to know by heart. There are certainly a number of songs I am sure you have committed to memory, as do a lot of Christians. Music often plays a helpful role in times of sorrow. I have been present at many memorial services where the song “God Will Take Care of You” was sung. The same author, Civilla D. Martin, also wrote the song, “His Eye Is on the Sparrow.” Listen to what she had to say regarding the writing of that song:
“Early in the spring of 1905, my husband and I were sojourning in Elmira, New York. We contracted a deep friendship for a couple by the name of Mr. and Mrs. Doolittle – true saints of God. Mrs. Doolittle had been bedridden for nigh twenty years. Her husband was an incurable cripple who had to propel himself to and from his business in a wheel chair. Despite their afflictions, they lived happy Christian lives, bringing inspiration and comfort to all who know them. One day while we were visiting with the Doolittles, my husband commented on their bright hopefulness and asked them for the secret of it. Mrs. Doolittle’s reply was simple: ‘His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.’ The beauty of this simple expression of boundless faith gripped the hearts and fired the imagination of me and my husband. The hymn “His Eye Is on the Sparrow” was the outcome of that experience.”
God loves us more than we can possibly imagine. He is faithful in his abundant care and endless blessing in our lives. The God we serve is the One who watches over even the smallest of creatures. And in the words of Jesus, “Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? (Matthew 6:26). Jesus is clear through all his teaching that God will meet all our needs. We must trust in him and remind ourselves of his faithfulness in our lives even before we were born. Listen again to the words of that wonderful hymn:
Why should I feel discouraged, why should the shadows come, Why should my heart be lonely, and long for heav’n and home, When Jesus is my portion? My constant Friend is He: His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me; His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.
“Let not your heart be troubled,” His tender word I hear, And resting on His goodness, I lose my doubts and fears; Though by the path He leadeth, but one step I may see; His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me; His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.
Whenever I am tempted, whenever clouds arise, When songs give place to sighing, when hope within me dies, I draw the closer to Him, from care He sets me free; His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me; His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.
I sing because I’m happy, I sing because I’m free, For His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.
Let’s sing because we’re happy in Christ. Let’s sing because we’re free in Christ. For his eye is on the sparrow, and I know he watches me.