Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Sparrows & Mud

We found this fragment of a hymnal under a garage we were dismantling last week in Minot, North Dakota. The flood waters had lifted the garage and pushed it against the house at an awkward angle. We demolished the garage, carried the debris to the side of the road, and uncovered this testimony to God's goodness-in-difficulty:

"His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me." The author of the poem, Civilla D. Martin, gives this testimony to how she wrote the hymn: "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 knew 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 Dr. Martin and me. The hymn 'His Eye Is on the Sparrow' was the outcome of that experience."

The Lord loves His servants dearly, and they are never out of His sight - even in difficulty and challenge.

"What I tell you in the darkness, speak in the light; and what you hear whispered in your ear, proclaim upon the housetops. Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him Who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a sent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So do not fear; you are more valuable than many sparrows. Therefore every who confesses Me before men, I will also confess him before My Father Who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father Who is in heaven" (Matthew 10:27-33).

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