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Jesus Loves Me
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For decades the beloved song Jesus Loves Me has been sung by children in church, at home, and in some cases, at school. Whenever a children's song is needed for a program or for congregational singing, Jesus Loves Me is most often chosen. After all, everyone has the first verse memorized. As adults, we wear a mentoring smile on our faces while we sing the words to the children for the children's sake.

Recently, our church was blessed with special music by one of our members. It was not the first time she had sung for special music, and we always enjoy her selections. On this Sabbath, however, she went to the microphone, and without any accompaniment, began singing Jesus Loves Me. My heart was so touched as the words coming from this dear, seventy-something woman seemed to bring new life to the song!\

"Jesus loves me, this I know.
For the Bible tells me so.
Little ones to him belong.
They are weak, but he is strong."

At first, I was touched because I felt sure she had chosen that song for the benefit of the young listeners in our congregation. But as this woman continued to sing the second verse, less common to most of us, I became even more personally drawn to the words.

"Jesus loves me, he who died.
Heaven's gates to open wide.
He will wash away my sin.
Let his little child come in."

I imagined heaven's gates opening...wide...for me! Not just for the “little ones to him belong,” but for me! I thought of how he washes my sins away and forgives me just as he would forgive a more innocent little one. I was completely captured by the song when she continued to sing the third verse.

"Jesus, take this heart of mine..."

Wait! I was sure I heard the singer's voice cracking. Did she just need a drink of water?

"Make it pure and wholly thine.
On the cross, you died for me.
I will love and live for thee."

Yes, there was definitely a catch in her voice and the slightest pause. Then I realized that this was not a little kids' song. This was her song. It was my song. And it is your song, too! How do we know? The Bible tells us so.

“God loved the people of this world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who has faith in him will have eternal life and never really die” (John 3:16).

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By Gwen Scott Simmons. Copyright © 2013 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the CONTEMPORARY ENGLISH VERSION, © 1999.

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